A new 24-hour phone line has been set up to enable people suffering a mental health crisis to get help fast.
The West London Mental Health Trust said the aim is to provide emergency mental health care with the same urgency people would expect from the NHS in a physical health emergency.
The number – 0300 1234 244 – enables people to get help from trained mental health advisors and clinicians 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. It was set up this week.
“In a crisis, patients need help fast and this new phone line provides exactly that,” said Cllr Vivienne Lukey, Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Social Care.
“This specialist service is very welcome news. It enables patients and carers to get the help and reassurance they need in what can be very stressful and frightening situations.”
After receiving a call, the team can:
- Send a crisis team to visit you or your loved-one at home
- Arrange for admission to a psychiatric hospital
- Arrange for an out-patient appointment the same or next day
- Ask you to go to A&E or contact the emergency services if you or anyone else is at risk
Thanks to the new line, patients can now get specialist support at home, enabling them to get treatment faster and reducing the need for hospital admissions.
Clinicians aim to respond within four hours in an emergency and within 24 hours in urgent cases, whatever the time of day - the same response times for acute NHS services.
The number is the same as West London Mental health Trust’s patient support line which can be called for advice and support any time of the day or night.