Service specific questions: Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust
1. What does your service do?
Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) provides a range of services to children and young people age 0-25 years who are experiencing social, behavioral, emotional and mental health difficulties.
The level of need ranges from individuals who are experiencing mild levels of distress to those with very disabling conditions that are longstanding in nature and require more intensive care and treatment.
NSFT initially aims to protect and improve the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people through promoting early intervention, prevention and building on resilience.
NSFT works jointly with a range of public, private and community sector organisations in delivering the care and treatment.
Our services work closely with the child/young person and or their family/ carer actively encouraging them to become involved in decisions about their intervention/treatment and the development of the goals for this.
Feedback on their experiences is routinely sought form them when we are developing or reviewing our services.
The services that we offer to children and young people are diverse and varied to reflect the broad spectrum of needs that we serve and include working across and in community and inpatient based settings.
We offer advice and consultation to children, young people, families/carers in addition to other organisations on areas relating to the emotional, mental and psychological wellbeing of children and young people. When a child or young person is thought to require direct care and intervention/treatment from our service, a comprehensive assessment will be completed to identify areas of need and to begin the development of a suitable care plan. When direct care and intervention/treatment is required, it may be short term or ongoing, depending on the needs. In all cases the care, intervention/treatment and support that we provide will be tailored to the persons needs and developed in partnership with them and their family/carer. Together we will develop person centered goals which will strive to sustain recovery and build on their resilience.
2. Where is it located and what areas does it cover?
NSFT provide a wide range of services to children, young people and their families across the counties of Suffolk and Norfolk. To find out more you can use the search facility which is hosted on the main page of our website.
The website descriptions will offer you detailed information about who services work with, opening times, where they are located and the managers contact details.
Click on ‘Find a Service’ (www.nsft.nhs.uk) to find out more about the service you require. The search tool is able to provide details of the services that cover the area where you live.
3. Who does your service provide for?
NSFT provides a broad range of services for children and young people age 0-25 years who are experiencing social, behavioral, emotional and mental health difficulties. Our services are delivered in many different ways and often in partnership with other health and social care organisations. Our care pathways are designed to promote a stepped care approach into the services we offer. This means that we aim to become involved as early as possible and at a level that is safe and appropriate to the individuals’ needs. For those with mild to moderate needs, this could involve providing other professionals working in universal and inclusive services, such as, primary care, education and social care with advice, training or recommendations on the support or services that should be offered. In other cases, where there is concern about the persons needs being more disabling, complex and/ or urgent, a direct assessment may be required to determine how best to meet the individual’s needs.
The list below is not exhaustive; it is intended to provide a broad outline of range of conditions that the children and young people (and their families) who we work with may have or show symptoms of:
• Anxiety (including phobias and obsessively compulsive disorders)
• Mood Disorders
• Eating Disorders
• Attachment Disorders & Childhood Trauma
• Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
• Behavioural problems
• Learning Disabilities with co-existing mental health conditions.
• Other Neurodevelopmental Conditions (e.g. Autistic Spectrum Condition)
Please use the search facility located on the main page of NSFT’s website (www.nsft.nhs.uk), this will enable you to search for the services you require by age and service type. The descriptions for each of the services will offer more detailed information about who the services work with, opening times, where they are located and managers contact details.
4. How can I start using the service?
Advice about how to make a referral can be obtained from our single points of contact called the Access and Assessment Services. There is one in Suffolk.
Please use the search facility located on the main page of NSFT’s website Click on ‘Contact us’(www.nsft.nhs.uk), for the contact details of these services.
Some of the services we provide can be accessed by self-referral, whereas others will need a referral to be made by a health or social care professional involved in your care. Some of the wellbeing services are open to self referral for people over 16 years of age.
Some teams and services may have waiting lists. The wait time to access services will often be based on the urgency or severity of your symptoms or needs, so may not always be on a first come first served basis. You will be advised what the likely waiting times are when you are offered an appointment.
NSFT is an NHS provider, so there is no direct charge to you for the services we provide other than any NHS prescription charges (if applicable) for medication that we prescribe. If you are using the service and have a care plan then using your personal budget to access some elements of your plan will be discussed with you on an individual basis.
5. How are decisions made about who can use your service?
Our service model has been developed to promote integration with other health, social care and educational organisations, and developing and building the skills of families and carers. This means that some of the services that we offer will be aimed at providing, advice, education, training and consultation to them, with the intention of enhancing the range of skills and competencies that they have in working with or supporting children and young people. Parents are actively encouraged to access the Suffolk-wide parenting programmes and can also access specialist programmes and one- off sessions run by local teams as part of their child’s care plan.
Decision making involves liaison between the referrer and our services to formulate a plan to address the individual’s presenting needs.
When an assessment is undertaken, it will be completed collaboratively with the person being assessed and take into consideration their views, preferences and personal goals of intervention or treatment. It will also take account of the views of family/carers and others involved in the individuals care and support with due respect to the boundaries of confidentiality. Part of the assessment may take place at your home, school or workplace.
As far as possible, decisions relating to the outcome of assessments will be shared with the person before the end of the assessment process. Information received during the assessment will usually be shared with the multidisciplinary team before a final decision on what care pathway is most helpful is made and your consent obtained. The professional who completes the assessment will normally write to you after the assessment to summarise the assessment outcome and detail the services that will be offered.
If they are unable to offer a service to you, they will explain why and also give you advice on the services that may be more suitable to meet your needs.
The information will be provided to you in a format that you are able to understand or, with your permission, shared with someone else who can help you to understand it. For younger children or young people who do not have the capacity to understand the information being provided, the letter would normally be sent to their parents or the person with parental responsibility.
6. How do you communicate with service users and how are they involved in decision making/planning?
We aim to communicate with people who use our services, and their families/carers, using telephone, letter, website information and face-to-face appointments. We share general information about our services using leaflets and websites; leaflets are available in Easy Read and can be language translated; our websites use translator software. Face-to-face and telephone appointments can also include a language or signing interpreter if this is needed and letters can be written in the preferred language of the service user and family carer or sent in audio or easy read format.
Our approach to providing services is collaborative and through working in partnership we aim to ensure that people are fully involved in decision making about their care and treatment.
We have a range of service user involvement and engagement groups and meetings that operate across the organisation and at a local level. These initiatives take a variety of forms ranging from including service users and family carers in the recruitment of staff, to service user and carer involvement in development or review of services, information and marketing.
We actively promote service user feedback through the use of local and national surveys. People who use our services are also encouraged to share their experiences informally, with the staff involved in their care and treatment. NSFT also has a formal compliments and complaints policy and works with PALS officers and service user advocacy groups to ensure fair and objective responses to concerns or compliments brought to our notice. Information on these services are also made available at the initial assessment.
7. Is your service fully accessible?
NSFT is fully committed to providing fair and personalised services to everyone that we serve in Norfolk and Suffolk. Equality of opportunity, and access, is at the centre of everything that we do. The buildings that we use to offer our services in are ‘fit for purpose’ and most are able to accommodate the needs of people with sensory, learning and physical disabilities including wheelchair access. If we are unable to meet the specific needs on an individual in one of our premises, we will make alternative arrangements to minimise the impact that this will have on their access to our services and or consider alternative options available.
The information that we have on our services is available in a range of formats and languages to meet the needs of our communities and individuals. We are continually looking to improve the way that we communicate with service users (and their families/carers) and frequently revise our working procedures to best meet their needs. We are very aware of the impact that the caring role has on family/carers and offer support in the form of advice, signposting, training and referrals for carers assessments.
We do not routinely provide transport to appointments or groups but will work with you to offer appointments and services as close to your home as possible; it would normally be your responsibility to make travel arrangements independently. People on benefits may be able to claim for costs associated with attending health appointments.
8. What training are the staff supporting children and young people with SEND had or are having?
Our staff have been informed about the SEND reforms and what this means for them as practitioners within the context of their day-to-day work. We have a programme of updates and training for all staff on disability awareness. Some of our staff have special qualifications, interests, training, knowledge and experience in working with people who have a range of disabilities. We are closely networked with partners in health, social care and education and are working to improve the co-ordination of services across these agencies.
9. Who can I contact for further information?
Please use the search facility located on the main page of NSFT’s website (www.nsft.nhs.uk). This will enable you to search for the services you require by age and service type. The descriptions for each of the services will offer you detailed information about who they work with, opening times, where they are located and the team managers' contact details.
Advice about how to make a referral can also be obtained from our single points of contact named the Access and Assessment Services in Suffolk. Full contact details for this service can be obtained through the hyperlink above and by clicking on ‘contact us’.
The first point of contact for parents who have a child or young person currently receiving a service is the named clinician. If the clinician is not available, please ask to speak to the team duty worker. The multidisciplinary team the clinician works in will also be aware of your child or young person's care needs and able to offer advice. Your GP, school nurse or health visitor will also be able to offer advice on which service may be able to help your child or young person.