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Mental Health Hubs set up for NHS workers

doctors working in hospital
doctors working in hospital Image credit: independent.co.uk

The NHS is putting up hubs across England to help their frontline workers suffering from mental health throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.

Staff going through depression, anxiety and PTSD will be able to speak to psychologists, therapists, recovery workers and mental health nurses through the new service.

Workers expected to be at higher risk developing a mental illness include those working on Covid wards, A&E units and intensive care.

Almost 50% of 7,776 doctors, ICU staff and nurses have revealed they are suffering from PTSD, anxiety or depression according to a study by the British Medical Association.

A poll carried out by the Royal College of Physicians found 19% of doctors working in hospital have reached out for mental health support and 10% asked their GP or manager for formal help since last March.

The 40 hubs, similar to those in operation following the Manchester Arena attack in May 2017, were announced by NHS England’s chief executive Simon Stevens in an interview with House magazine.

Paul Farmer, chief executive of Mind, said: “We know how tough it’s been for so many frontline NHS staff over the last twelve months … These hubs are an important step forward at this crucial time to signal the support that is available now.”

He went on to say around 180,000 frontline workers, including NHS staff, have contacted the Our Frontline 24/7 support service run by Mind, Shout, Hospice UK and Samaritans.

Shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth criticised plans to replace clinical commissioning groups with new integrated care systems.

He went on to express concern giving the health secretary more power over NHS England.

Ashworth said: “Just look at the scorecard. Nightingales set up and the vaccination programme delivered by the NHS [but] contact tracing, PPE to the frontline in the early phase, hotel quarantine and protecting care homes all controlled by this secretary of state,”

Simon Stevens said he was scared the number of people with Covid-19 recently reached 33,000.