Mental health crisis centre to open

A MENTAL health crisis centre is on track to open in Guernsey by Christmas and a location has been scoped out.

Health & Social Care president Al Brouard and vice-president Tina Bury. (Picture by Peter Frankland, 30108653)
Health & Social Care president Al Brouard and vice-president Tina Bury. (Picture by Peter Frankland, 30108653)

The facility, which will operate as a pilot project initially, will offer intensive, short-term support to help people manage a mental health crisis in a residential setting, rather than in a hospital.

Health & Social Care president Al Brouard told the public hearing organised by Scrutiny Management, that the pilot would help them to ‘get under the bonnet’ of the problems.

And he anticipated it would fill a gap in mental health services between primary and secondary care.

‘We’re looking at ways that we can close that gap and make it seamless for users, we have excellent primary care services, you can see your GP very quickly and they’re very professional, we’ve got excellent secondary mental health facilities for those that have mental illness.

‘It’s that gap in the middle that we want to explore and make sure that people have a seamless experience and no matter how they feel, they can get the help they need.’

Establishing a mental health crisis centre is one of HSC’s top priorities in the Government Work Plan.

The aim is that it will be a safe, comfortable, compassionate and non-medicalised environment to give emotional and practical support to people who are feeling that they can no longer cope.

Deputy Brouard said if the pilot was successful, other services could end up joining it. ‘We very much want to use it not only to help service users now, but also to inform our future decisions as to how we take that particular service forward.

‘We have the funding in place and we’re working at the moment with a third party provider to provide those facilities for us.’

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