Access to mental health support in Barnsley is now easier than ever before with the launch of a re-commissioned free improving access to psychological therapies service (IAPT).
The Barnsley IAPT service offers talking therapy sessions and all it takes to sign up is for you to phone or email, or ask for a referral from your health care team.
The service aims to help people before their worries and low mood impact on their day-to-day lives. It has been re-commissioned by Barnsley Clinical Commissioning Group to improve the availability of talking therapies so more people are able to use them and when they do use them, people feel more able to complete all the sessions.
Dr Mark Smith, Barnsley GP with a focus on mental health for the clinical commissioning group, explained: “Everyone goes through difficult times but sometimes people’s problems can affect their daily lives. The Barnsley talking therapies service is there to help by enabling the person to work through their problems and develop strategies for coping better.”
Talking therapies can help with issues such as anxiety, depression, low mood, panic, phobias, obsessive compulsive disorder, health anxiety, stress and trauma. People with long-term physical health conditions such as diabetes or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD, may also benefit from the self-referral to the IAPT service.
Dr Smith added: “We are ambitious with our plans for mental health and wellbeing services. This new service offers better access for the thousands of people who use talking therapies in Barnsley each year. People told us that they’d prefer a range of venues, which were local to them and more convenient appointment times. They also want the wait for support to be shorter. It shouldn’t be a one-size fits-all, so we’ve added more choice into the services. This should improve access to help and also tackle issues early before they become more serious problems.”
The new contract for IAPT has been awarded to our Trust.
Liz Holdsworth, team manager from the IAPT service, said: “We are thrilled to have been awarded this contract and look forward to working closely with the CCG and the people of Barnsley. Plans are in place for people to be seen sooner and the range of therapy courses, workshops, stress management groups will be expanded, including online support. There will also be a new website to support people to access the service and find out more information. Give us a call on 01226 644900 if you think this service could help.”