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Mental health awareness week - it’s ok to not be ok

As part of Mental Health Awareness Week, NHS Vale of York Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust (TEWV), which provides mental health and learning disability services across York and Selby, are encouraging people to continue to access mental health services.

Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, significant events like bereavement, changes to employment, relationship breakdown, traumatic events or even stress at work can lead to difficulties requiring help and support. However, fewer people have been accessing NHS services for a range of conditions, including support with mental health problems.

Naomi Lonergan, director of operations at TEWV, said: “World events and changing circumstances can be very unsettling.  The arrival and spread of a coronavirus, COVID-19, is a cause for concern for many of us. Worries about our health, finances and those closest to us, as well as changes to how we live our everyday lives can leave us feeling overwhelmed, anxious or stressed. 

“Mental health services in York and Selby are still very much open for business and there is support available to help you if you need it. Please speak to your GP or care co-ordinator if you feel you need more support.”

The CCG commission mental health services in the Vale of York and are working with TEWV to ensure people can still access services and get the help they need.

Denise Nightingale, Executive Director of Transformation, Complex Care and Mental Health, Vale of York CCG said: “The change and uncertainty surrounding our communities at this time have been challenging, with many experiencing devastating loss. It’s ok to not be ok at any point in our lives, including a pandemic, and so we want to encourage people who feel they are struggling with their mental health to self-refer into the IAPT service and speak with professionals who can listen and help.”

“We are prepared for a possible increase in referrals and want to reassure people that support continues to be available for anyone who may feel they need it.”

Getting help

Mental Health Crisis information

If someone needs to talk to about how you are feeling or how to deal with someone else’s behaviour at any time of day, the Samaritans offer a 24-hour confidential telephone helpline and can be contacted on 116 123.

If someone is going through a mental health crisis and is at risk of serious harm they (or the person they are with) should immediately call 999.

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