The 24-7 Control Room Triage Service will be delivered by North West Boroughs Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust and Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust, working in partnership with Greater Manchester Police. It will ultimately help to reduce demand on emergency services.
Launching in August, the service will see trained mental health professionals based at the Clayton Brook communications centre, assessing incidents relating to mental health and providing advice and support to police staff, to help avoid unnecessary deployments of police officers.
Mental health staff will also provide expert clinical advice to police officers through telephone or video conferencing, supporting them to make the right decisions when responding to incidents involving people who are experiencing mental health problems.
The new service has been commissioned by Greater Manchester Combined Authority and the 10 NHS clinical commissioning groups in Greater Manchester.
Gail Briers, Chief Nurse and Executive Director of Operational Clinical Services at North West Boroughs Healthcare, said:
“We are proud to have been given the opportunity to deliver this brand-new service in partnership with neighbouring trusts Greater Manchester Mental Health and Pennine Care, and working closely with Greater Manchester Police.
“The service will sit alongside our Greater Manchester Integrated Healthcare, Liaison and Diversion Service, which launched in February last year and will further enhance support for vulnerable people across Greater Manchester who come into contact with the police.”
Dr Chris Daly, Medical Director for Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust said:
“Our Trust has an excellent working relationship with Greater Manchester Police and we are glad to support them when they are dealing with some of the most vulnerable people in society.
“Not only will this service support police officers, it will also ensure people living with a mental health issue get the care they need sooner. Very often when police attend an incident, the individual has not committed a crime, but needs urgent mental health help and a place of safety. Our experts will be well-placed to support officers make informed decisions.”
Henry Ticehurst, Medical Director at Pennine Care said:
“I am pleased Pennine Care will form part of this newly launched service, providing trained mental health professionals to support our partners and Greater Manchester Police.
“Providing expert advice will support the most vulnerable in our society and avoid the unnecessary deployment of police officers.”
Rob Potts, Assistant Chief Constable at Greater Manchester Police said:
“This collaborative approach will see trained mental health professionals working alongside and supporting officers, allowing us to protect the most vulnerable at times of crisis and ensuring the best outcome for the individuals affected at the earliest opportunity.”
Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime Bev Hughes said:
“Police officers are often the first contact for people going through a mental health crisis so it’s vital they have immediate access to the right help and advice to be able to support those in need.
“By doing things differently we are building on our work to transform mental health crisis care, once again bringing police and health partners together to enhance existing services, reduce demand on our over-stretched emergency services and, importantly, ensure the most vulnerable members of our community are protected and supported.”