We store cookies on your device to make sure we give you the best experience on this website. I'm fine with this - Turn cookies off
Switch to an accessible version of this website which is easier to read. (requires cookies)

MP helps launch calls for more mental health support for health and care staff

May 18, 2020 2:20 PM

On Mental Health Awareness Week, South Lakes MP Tim Farron and the Liberal Democrats are calling on the Government to ramp up mental health support for health and care staff to ensure "world-class" support for those on the front-line fighting coronavirus.

The party have put forward a package of mental health measures designed for rapid roll-out across the NHS and care sectors, including:

  • 24/7 access to mental health support for health and social care workers, through a dedicated helpline
  • Guarantees that health and care staff will no longer be penalised for time off due to mental or physical ill health by scrapping the Bradford scoring system and other HR practices that can create a culture of presenteeism
  • Introduce an 'occupational health passport' so workers do not have to relive mental health traumas if or when they change jobs
  • Additional training to ensure there are mental health first-aiders in every health and care workforce
  • Steps to standardise the quality and service offer to ensure that every health and social care worker can access the same, high standard of mental care support regardless of the region in which they are based

The roll out of these services must be for all staff, whether or not they are directly involved in patient treatment, in recognition of the wide scale of the impact of the COVID-19 across all teams.

Tim is also submitting a Parliamentary Written Question today to the Department for Health asking what plans they have to provide 24/7 mental health support for health and care staff.

Tim said: "On Mental Health Awareness Week, it's important that we remember that while this virus may be defeated in the coming months, the mental health impacts will last a lifetime.

"Our amazing health and care staff have gone above and beyond to tackle this dreadful virus, but thousands will have lost colleagues, endured serious illness, or faced significant trauma.

"That is why we are proposing a series of measures to ensure no-one slips through the net as the scale of the mental health impact of this crisis emerges.

"The clap for carers is not just a gesture - people want to see those on the frontline supported right through this crisis and beyond, and we owe it to them to make sure they get that support.

"Ministers must get on top of the mental health impact of COVID-19 by backing our measures to support our vital NHS and care staff when they need it most."