As the NHS prepares for another wave of COVID-19 admissions due to the emergence of the Omicron variant, the staff at Barts Health NHS Trust, will now have access to a package of psychological and mental health support, thanks to our generous supporters.
In July 2020, we announced a £3m package of long-term support for NHS staff at risk of stress, anxiety and other mental health problems following the scale and impact of the COVID-19 crisis.
We received a superb response to our COVID emergency appeal, which included a £1.2m donation from Capula Investment Management. This money was directed towards the deployment of clinical psychologists within each of the five hospitals of the Barts Health NHS Trust – St Bartholomew’s, The Royal London, Newham, Whipps Cross and Mile End.
Dr Carla Croft, Consultant Clinical Psychologist and Service Lead for the Psychological Support Service at Barts Health NHS Trust reflects on the crucial need for this new service:
“Burnout, apathy, these things are huge. We’re not going to have a workforce if we don’t think about these things carefully.”
Responding to additional pressures put on staff during the pandemic, the Psychological Support Service, has made a huge impact on supporting an over-stretched and emotionally tired workforce. Highlights so far include:
- Funding 5.5 staff members employed covering all five hospitals
- Service provides support for every profession across the trust at every banding level
- The offering is 60% group work and 40% tailored one-to-one sessions
- The team’s approach is highly collaborative, directly led by the needs of service users and staff across the hospitals
- Data will be captured from the project which will help other hospitals trusts develop their own psychological support services for NHS staff
Beyond the introduction of the dedicated psychological support service across the five hospitals, the generous COVID Appeal donations have funded an extensive refurbishment programme focused on improving staff experience across each of the five hospitals. Here’s are a couple of updates on the additional projects:
- Construction of new wellbeing hubs for staff in each hospital are underway with the first hub at St Bartholomew’s now open, providing a space for well-deserved rest and relaxation
- Upgrades to over 150 staff rest rooms and tea/coffee areas
- Upgraded staff locker room, shower and changing room facilities now open at Newham and Whipps Cross.
- Refurbishment of 38 on-call rooms with new ensuite facilities
- Construction underway for new secure and weatherproof cycle storage to support active travel across hospital sites
We are grateful to all the donations that have enabled us to provide staff with more support during the pandemic and fund projects that prioritise long-term staff wellbeing initiatives.