Everyday Mental Health Heroes of the NHS

by Dennis Baldwin, Reach Out; Start to End Suicide in Salford, England, United Kingdom

Everyday Mental Health Heroes of the NHS
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'Everyday Mental Health Heroes' sees Salford Royal NHS Trust staff supported to create a positive & supportive mental health workplace

by Dennis Baldwin, Reach Out; Start to End Suicide in Salford, England, United Kingdom

Front-line Healthcare Workers often suffer from anxiety, depression, burnout, insomnia, stress-related disorders and suicide.  

In just six years between 2011 and 2017, at least 307 NHS nurses took their own lives.

Despite the huge magnitude of mental health problems among the front-line Healthcare Workers, their psychological health is often overlooked.

Front-line healthcare workers play a crucial role in providing care to Covid-19 infected patients. Working in such an unprecedented situation, usually beyond their capacities, and with a risk of contracting the infection themselves, poses Healthcare Workers at an even higher risk of mental health problems and suicide in the future. 

In response START's multi awarding campaign Reach Out; Start to End Suicide and Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust will deliver the Everyday Mental Health Heroes on Salford Royals acute care wards. It’ll inspire, educate and empower them to meaningfully connect with people around them, raise awareness, improve attitudes and increase dialogue on suicide, while improving resilience, saving lives and challenge stigma.

 It is anticipated that Everyday Mental Health Heroes of the NHS  will result in:

  • 200 staff members qualifying as Everyday Mental Health Heroes of the NHS
  • Individuals having better awareness of suicide prevention and improved mental health and well-being.
  • Improved capacity of individuals to respond to and engage proactively with individuals in distress.

The Everyday Mental Health Heroes will see the implementation of this three stage model:

 LEARN - Developed by the Zero Suicide Alliance the online program helps participants to play their part in saving lives. The program replaces quiz-based questions with real life stories and scenario videos from a range of ages, ethnicities and suicidal issues. Each clip describes potential warning signs and teaches participants how to feel comfortable when talking with loved ones, friends or colleagues about suicide and mental health.

PLEDGE- Participants, after completion of the online training, will sign and make a pledge a giant display of the pledge to commit to reaching out when they are or when they notice others struggling .  

WEAR- By choosing to wear the yellow Reach Our flag badge, staff are sending a message that "you can talk to me” both to their colleagues and patients. Wearing the flag badge doesn't mean they are expected to have the answers to all issues and concerns, but they are a friendly ear and will know how to signpost to the support available. 


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