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New mental health support service launched for health and care staff

A new COVID-19 support service for health and care staff across Norfolk and Suffolk launched today, 25 January, to help them cope with the immense pressures of working during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Norfolk and Suffolk COVID-19 support service; run in partnership by Suffolk Mind and Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) will give all health and care staff rapid access to mental health support from local mental health specialists.

Health and care staff can call the confidential COVID-19 support service on 0300 123 1335 Monday to Friday 09:30 – 16:30
Specially trained Suffolk Mind call handlers will offer emotional support, signposting and referral into the dedicated COVID support clinical team run by NSFT if treatment is needed.

Diane Palmer, a lead nurse at NSFT said: “I feel privileged to be developing and leading this important new service, which will provide rapid access to psychological support for frontline health, social care and care staff who have been supporting the response to the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Tony Wooderson from Suffolk Mind said “We are so pleased to be offering this service to the amazing professionals who are doing such a vital job on the frontline. We want to ensure they are receiving the support they need during this incredibly challenging time. 

“We are here to be a listening ear, offer emotional support and signpost wherever necessary”. 

Jonathan Warren, chief executive at NSFT said: “Every one of us in the health and care system has been affected by the pressures of the COVID-19 pandemic. During this incredibly difficult time, our health and care staff continue to provide the highest standards of care to the people in our communities, and it’s vital that we look after them while they care for others.

“This funding from NHS England provides us with an opportunity to enhance the existing national and local support on offer to these staff, improve the resilience of teams, and crucially help to keep our staff well and able to continue their fantastic work across the health and care system.”

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