More than 1.3 million people have participated in events and activities to improve mental health and tackle inequalities as part of the Thrive LDN movement since 2017.
Highlights positive results of meaningful relationships and interventions developed at a London, multi-borough and community or local level.
‘We can’t overlook the huge challenges in recent years which makes the public mental health agenda even more important’ says Thrive LDN’s leadership.
London’s public mental health partnership, Thrive LDN, today marks its fifth anniversary.
Since launching on 4 July 2017, more than 1.3 million people have participated in events and activities to improve mental health and tackle inequalities as part of the Thrive LDN partnership. The participatory approach to supporting the mental health and wellbeing of Londoners has demonstrably had a positive impact, say Thrive LDN leadership.
Two million Londoners experience some form of poor mental health every year. Suicide is the leading cause of death for people between the ages of 10 and 34 and every week around 12 Londoners take their own lives. There are many communities in London who are at higher risk of unfair treatment based on their identity, beliefs, or social class, and in some cases a combination of these.
These shocking and sad statistics were the reason the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, and the London Health Board partners launched Thrive LDN, to work alongside Londoners to improve awareness and encourage more action around mental health and health inequalities.
Commenting on Thrive LDN reaching five years, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “When we launched Thrive LDN in 2017, no one could have foreseen the scale of the strains and pressures Londoners would have to face in the coming years. The pandemic and the ongoing cost of living crisis have had an unprecedented impact on the mental health and wellbeing of people across the capital. I want to pay tribute to Thrive LDN for the vital support they continue to provide to so many Londoners as we recover from the pandemic and work to build a better London for everyone – a happier, healthier and fairer city for all.”
Since Thrive LDN launched, the movement has grown and spread across the city. The Youth Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) programme has trained more than 100 new Youth MHFA Instructors and delivered Youth MHFA training to more than 4,000 education and youth sector staff citywide. Schools and colleges are working with Thrive LDN to play a role in the prevention of poor mental health and promotion of wellbeing for this and future generations.
The Thrive LDN Suicide Prevention Group is made up of 36 organisations and 48 members who are undertaking several citywide projects. This includes the development of Thrive LDN’s Suicide Prevention Information Sharing Hub which allows vital information to be securely shared to enable effective bereavement support and helps increase understanding and knowledge for agencies involved when a person takes their own life.
The Right to Thrive initiative has created a broad range of partnerships and grant funded nearly £300,000 to 36 grassroot projects which collectively aim to support those communities and groups most likely to experience poor mental health to amplify their voices, share power and leadership, and address some of the health equity issues they are facing.
The citywide #ZeroSuicideLDN campaign has seen more than 300,000 Londoners take the Zero Suicide Alliance’s free, online suicide prevention training to break the stigma of talking about suicide, suicidal thoughts and suicide bereavement. The campaign continues to be supported by the London FA, Metropolitan and British Transport Police, the NHS, all London Councils, London Fire Brigade and many more.
Earlier this year, on Friday 28 January, London hosted the first ever Great Mental Health Day across the region. The day saw Londoners and community groups sharing ideas and ways in which they are supporting their own wellbeing or others in their community or neighbourhoods. Close to 10,000 people accessed the interactive map of London on Thrive LDN’s website to find out what is going on in their area. Thrive LDN will facilitate the next Great Mental Health Day on behalf of regional partners in January 2023.
Councillor Kaya Comer-Schwartz, Leader of Islington Borough Council, was recently appointed as Thrive LDN Co-Lead, succeeding Mayor Philip Glanville. Cllr Comer-Schwartz said: “Thrive LDN is one of the capital’s flagship health initiatives. As we mark five years, thank you to everyone who has been part of this movement so far.
“I’m excited to join the Thrive LDN leadership team at this crucial stage when the public mental health agenda has never been more important. I’m conscious of the task ahead of us, we are only at the beginning of this journey.
“There is substantial evidence that the coronavirus pandemic has simultaneously widened pre-existing inequalities whilst creating new ones, such as problem debt, rising unemployment or structural inequalities. We can’t overlook the many other huge challenges and pressures on Londoners which makes this even more important.
“By working together and supporting each other, I’m confident we can build a city where every Londoner feels supported to thrive.”
Commenting on the fifth anniversary, Thrive LDN director, Dan Barrett, who supported the launch of the partnership in July 2017 said: “In 2017, things began with a series of open discussions with Londoners – to encourage everyone to think, talk and act more when it comes to mental wellbeing. Five years on from these initial community conversations, there has been real progress, demonstrating that we can achieve great things when we work together. Of course, there is still much more for us to learn and do but we believe our foundations and purpose are stronger than ever.
“Thrive LDN exists to drive and facilitate change. As we emerge from the coronavirus crisis, we must continue to put people and communities in the lead, allowing us to develop meaningful and trusted relationships at a London, multi-borough and community level. Doing so will allow us to support the wellbeing and resilience of all Londoners who need help and support now and beyond the pandemic.
“We look forward to continuing to work with partners inside and outside of health and care systems to find new ways of reaching, involving, and supporting Londoners to improve mental health and prevent a decline in wellbeing.”
Thrive LDN is one of many initiatives to improve mental health across the globe. Cities such as New York, Toronto, Edinburgh, Barcelona and many more have been leading new ways of improving the wellbeing of citizens and to tackle the inequalities and challenges that can lead to poor mental health. Explore Thrive LDN’s activities and events at www.thiveldn.co.uk.
For further media enquiries, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org / 020 8148 5123
NOTES TO EDITORS:
Thrive LDN is a citywide public mental health partnership to ensure all Londoners have an equal opportunity for good mental health and wellbeing. Launched publicly by the Mayor of London and the London Health Board partners in 2017, Thrive LDN has evolved and grown significantly in the past five years. More information can be found at thriveldn.co.uk.
Two million Londoners experience some form of poor mental health every year and Londoners’ life satisfaction and feelings of self-worth are lower than the national average. Thrive LDN was established in response to this, with the aim of reducing the number of Londoners affected by poor mental health.
In July 2017, Thrive LDN launched Thrive LDN: towards happier, healthier lives (2017), a summary of work engaging with hundreds of experts by profession and by experience across London’s public, charitable and business sectors to identify what would make a difference to Londoners’ mental health and wellbeing.
Thrive LDN’s campaign, Are we OK London?, started an open conversation with Londoners about mental health and wellbeing. As a result, it generated over 420,000 interactions and are now working with partners on several citywide and local projects across London. Thrive LDN also held community workshops, in partnership with the Mental Health Foundation, in 17 of the 32 London boroughs to start conversations on a community level.
Thrive LDN’s 2018 campaign engaged with a more diverse audience, grew our followers and subscribers and increased discussion and action around how inequality and discrimination can affect Londoners’ mental health and wellbeing, with a potential reach of over 23 million people. The campaign culminated with a festival of cultural activity organised by young Londoners.
Also in 2019, Thrive LDN began leading the #ZeroSuicideLDN campaign with support from the Mayor, the NHS in London, London Councils, London’s police forces, Transport for London, and other emergency services, such as London Fire Brigade and the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, alongside voluntary and community groups, such as Mind in Haringey, and many others. For more information visit thriveldn.co.uk/zerosuicideldn.
Since 2020, Thrive LDN has awarded nearly £300,000 to 36 community and grassroot projects across London to help support the mental health and wellbeing of those who are experiencing higher levels of unfair treatment and discrimination through its Right to Thrive initiative.
In March 2020, Thrive LDN was asked to lead the regional coordination of the public mental health response to and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Thrive LDN developed a response plan and agreed business cases with health and social care partners. Between April 2020 and March 2021 more than 685,000 people took part in projects, events, and activities on which Thrive LDN has led or collaborated on.
In May 2021, the London Health and Care Leaders’ Group commissioned the Thrive LDN Advisory Group to undertake a comprehensive review of regional public mental health across three main areas:
Review available public mental health research and insights.
Review the strategic and policy landscape to identify opportunities and levers for collective action around public mental health.
Review the public mental health literature to define how we can collectively approach and achieve change.
Most importantly, in response to the above, Thrive LDN developed a series of actions where opportunities could be maximised in the short, medium and long term. Subsequently, the Towards Happier, Healthier Lives (2021) report was endorsed by the London Health Board in November 2021.
On Friday, 28 January 2022, Thrive LDN supported the facilitation of London’s first ever Great Mental Health Day. On the whole, Great Mental Health Day was a huge success and provides a strong platform for us to collectively build upon:
Close to 10,000 people accessed the interactive map of London on Thrive LDN’s website to find out what is going on in their area.
On the day, there were more than 750 individual tweets using #GreatMentalHealth and more than 20,000 video views on Thrive LDN channels alone.
More than 60 events took place across almost every borough in London, many of which were held in person, involving local walks, coffee mornings and workshops.
More recently, Thrive LDN has supported the public mental health response to emerging crises on behalf of the region, from the pandemic to the climate emergency, to the current cost-of-living crisis, to geopolitical crises in Afghanistan, Hong Kong, and Ukraine. All these crises are putting pressure on Londoners and creating devastating mental health consequences of wider inequalities, disproportionately affecting Londoners with lived experiences of marginalisation and disadvantage.
This section brings together a range of resources that use clear and simple terms to explain some of the most complex issues about COVID and about the vaccinations that can protect us against it.
How to have confident COVID-19 conversations: This is for any person who needs to discuss the issues relating to COVID-19 vaccinations with others such as work colleagues, family, friends, or patients. It has a range of guides to having confident COVID-19 conversations that will give you the facts you need to have these conversations with confidence,
COVID-19 made simple videos: These are recording from webinars featuring leading experts that explain some of the key concerns colleagues have about COVID-19 vaccinations – such as vaccine side effects, the impact on having a child, and how the effectiveness of immunisation. Ideal for anybody who has hesitations or unanswered questions about how vaccines work.
BSL COVID-19 videos for Deaf people: These are BSL videos specifically developed with leading BSL for both colleagues and the public in the Deaf community, which adapt and build on the original COVID-19 made simple playlist. Ideal for anyone living with hearing loss who has hesitations or unanswered questions about how vaccines work.
Healthy London Partnership is launching a new pilot programme to support London’s social prescribing link workers improve delivery of social prescribing services in primary care.
Individuals and small groups that apply could receive up to £10,000 in grant funding and six months of dedicated support to tackle a challenge they face in through delivery of a specific social prescribing project.
Applications open 22 June 2022 and the deadline to apply is 11:59pm 20 July 2022.
Individuals and small groups working on social prescribing services in London could be eligible for up to £10,000 in grant funding and a six-month coaching and support programme.
Applications for Healthy London Partnership’s new Social Prescribing Innovators Programme open 22 June and there will be four weeks to apply.
Successful applicants, as judged by some of London’s most expert social prescribing professionals, academics, and clinicians, will be supported to deliver a specific project targeting a particular implementation issue, for six months from October 2022.
Dr Jagan John, Clinical Director for Personalised Care in London, and Chair of the North East London Clinical Commissioning Group says the programme will unleash powerful ideas from London’s vibrant social prescribing workforce to help overcome some of the implementation challenges of expanding delivery into London’s primary care networks.
“Social prescribing link workers, when based as part of the multi-disciplinary team in primary care networks, can really tackle the health inequalities many Londoners face. Yet time and again we hear how difficult it is to recruit and retain people with the right skills, set up hubs in the right locations, or link to appropriate services in communities outside the health service. This programme will give talented individuals and teams the opportunity to have the support they need to test out new ideas for making sure we can rollout social prescribing right across London, taking a holistic approach to even more people’s health and wellbeing while easing the pressure on the NHS.”
The results of the pilot programme will be shared in March next year. The innovative solutions developed by those who take part in the programme will be shared with all those interested in mainstreaming social prescribing across London’s primary care services and beyond.
Social prescribing was highlighted as a priority by the Secretary of State for Health and Care Sajid Javed earlier this year, is a key commitment in the NHS Long Term Plan.
In England, 90,000 adults live in the community with a long-term In Dwelling Catheter (IDC). Approximately half of these adults with an IDC will experience adverse effects. NHS London and the National CLEAR Programme are offering support to organisations interested in improving local catheter care pathways.
The project will involve linking and analysing acute, community and London Ambulance Service data, to innovate and recommend new models of care and workforce to enhance catheter care in London.
What will the catheter project involve?
The NHSE/I regional lead, together with CLEAR, will support, facilitate, and coordinate the project, which involve stakeholder engagement, cross-organisational data analysis and presenting findings of new models of care/workforce.
A clinically agreed and enhanced model of care that can enhance and standardise catheter care across London.
New models that align with the NHS Long Term Plan and support the restoration and recover of NHS services.
Quick wins that may be implemented during the project with wider, more detailed changes worked up as part of the outputs of the CLEAR programme.
A system-wide understanding of how changes can be made locally upon the findings of the CLEAR project.
Extensive report to determine the key improvements required to enhance the quality of the data collected by the system.
Initial set of analytics to provide insights into how care can be standardised across the system for catheter care.
Set of recommendations for possible next steps.
Submitting an expression of Interest (EOI)
If you are interested in project support for analysing acute, community and London Ambulance service data to improve catheter care pathways for your patients and organisation, please read and complete all sections of the complete EOI document.
Personality disorders have been called the most misunderstood mental health condition. They have a legacy of confusion and controversy around diagnosis, language, what it means and how it impacts individuals, and even what they should be called.
Yet it is estimated that worldwide, around 8% of the general population report having complex emotional needs These figures rise to around 25% of people accessing primary care services and 50% accessing community mental health services will experience symptoms or behaviours related to the formally diagnosed.
Now a team of people who have mental health and social difficulties commonly associated with the diagnosis of ‘personality disorder’, supported by Healthy London Partnership, is launching a campaign to raise awareness of a condition which can result in rejection, distress, and stigma rather than support.
The campaign centres on a series of podcasts, devised, produced and led by those with lived experience, to increase awareness and understanding of the conditions, and raise hope regarding support and treatment options.
The importance of diagnosing personality disorders
Personality disorders can be difficult to diagnose, and in the past, there has been controversy as to how far treatment can help. Research and the voice of those who have accessed help have made it clear that mental health services can and should help people with personality disorders
Diagnosis can help make sense of the condition – both for the person and for their family and friends. But for others, it may result in feeling marginalised by health care services, family and community.
There is too often a lack of understanding of the various personality disorders, even among health professionals. There is a need for more training, better access to information and, for some, a mindset change when it comes to addressing the conditions.
The NHS Long Term Plan for Mental Health makes a renewed commitment to improve and widen access to care for children and adults needing mental health support. Crucially, this includes ensuring change is co-produced, from design to delivery – with people with lived experience.
The Royal College of Psychiatrists defines a personality disorder as “an enduring condition which interferes with the sufferer’s sense of wellbeing and ability to function in full in ordinary social settings.”
There is disagreement about the term ‘personality disorders’, with some people finding it confusing or stigmatising. It can feel like being told that your personality is ‘wrong’. Some clinicians and people with lived experience prefer the term complex emotional needs or CEN.
Personality disorders are in fact a range of 10 different mental health conditions. However, some peopled find these classifications unhelpful, as most people with a personality disorder do not fit neatly into one category. According to the mental health charity Mind: “Some people believe the focus should instead be on what each person needs in order to deal with their problems and discover new ways of living, not what category they are in.”
Life can be difficult for people with a personality disorder as they can also develop other mental health problems such as depression and anxiety.
2. How many people are affected by personality disorders?
It is not known exactly what causes them, but it is thought to be a combination of genetic factors and life events.
4. How are personality disorders diagnosed?
Personality disorders can be difficult to diagnose. To receive a diagnosis of personality disorder, somebody must meet some or all of a set of diagnostic criteria.
Diagnosis can help make sense of the condition – both for the person with the personality disorder, and for their family and friends. But for others, it may result in feeling marginalised by health care services, family, and their community.
5. How are personality disorders treated?
In the past there has been controversy as to how far treatment can help., Recent research however has made it clear that mental health services can and should help people with personality disorders. Many people with a personality disorder do recover over time. Psychological or medical treatment is often helpful, but support is sometimes all that is needed.
There’s no single approach that suits everyone and treatment should be tailored to the individual.
6. Where can you get help for personality disorders?
If you are concerned that you might have a personality disorder, there are a range of resources available online which will help you further understand the signs and symptoms of personality disorders. This piece from the Royal College of Psychiatrists is a good place to start but we’ve also compiled a short list of other useful resources at the bottom of the page.
When starting a conversation about a potential diagnosis, the first thing you should do is visit your GP.
7. What is the NHS doing to better help people with personality disorders?
The NHS is providing an increase in funding from 2022 to enable transformation of community mental health services. It will work with GPs, commissioners, local authorities and the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector, and, crucially, with service users, their families, and carers to create a new, flexible, model of community-based mental health care for people with personality disorder/complex emotional needs.
The new models will offer dedicated services, jointly created with people with lived experience of personality disorders. Services will aim to provide timely access to evidence-based psychological therapies, and provide care for co-existing needs, such as substance use. People with personality disorder/complex emotional needs have sometimes experienced punitive approaches from services. The new models of care focus on compassion and an understanding of the trauma that so many people have experienced.
A group for those who care for people living with borderline personality disorder or emotional unstable personality disorder, providing mutual support through discussions and the opportunity to speak to our lived experience facilitator.
This piece from mental health charity, Rethink, tells you what personality disorders are, what the symptoms are, and how you can get treatment. You might find it useful if you have a personality disorder yourself, or if you care for someone who does.
A supportive piece by Help Guide, which is a great resource for anybody supporting someone who is living with a personality disorder. It provides tips and best practices to improve communication, set healthy boundaries, and stabilise your relationship.
See below to meet our fantastic team, find out their experience and strengths, and how to contact them.
The information is arranged in order of the main projects or programmes that people work on, however in reality our team is multi-faceted, and our work is linked, meaning that everyone does more than what they are listed under!
Briony is leading the Health and Care in the Community programme, overseeing a range of improvement programmes supporting the national Ageing Well programme including enhanced health in care home, urgent community response and anticipatory care, alongside reducing in-hospital length of stay and a range of digital transformation initiatives for community services and social care. A nurse by background, Briony has extensive experience of senior operational leadership in emergency care, quality improvement methodology and delivering whole system transformation programmes. She is on secondment from the London Ambulance Service where she has been Deputy Director of Nursing and Quality since 2014.
Phil has been in the NHS and DHSC for over 35 years, working primarily has an analyst. He has worked at local, regional and national levels including spells at the CQC and a health consultancy. Phil helped develop the national RightCare programme which aims to improve patient pathways, and health outcomes, whilst optimising the use of taxpayer’s money. He currently supports the Urgent Community Response programme and provides analytical advice to the rest of the team.
Pauline is the London regional lead for Community Services, working with the National Aging Well Team and London Integrated Care System partners to enhance and improve the safe delivery of high-quality community services across London. Currently the significant focus is on the development and delivery on the Urgent Community 2-hour Crisis Response service. Pauline is a registered nurse/district nurse and has worked in the NHS for 34 years with a wealth of experience in senior Clinical. Operational and Strategic roles.
Lorraine leads, with Dan Heller, PMO activities for the programme; and supports the Community Services and Urgent Community Response & Restoration; and Digital Community Health workstreams. Lorraine has over 30 years experience working in the NHS. She also managed the Operations teams at Healthy London Partnership and was deputy lead for the Adult Mental Health programme. Previously, Lorraine worked at NICE, leading various guideline programmes, the corporate office and commissioning and managing social care and public guideline activities.
Isabel del Arbol Stewart – Digital Community Health Services Programme Lead
Isabel is the London lead for the Digital Community Health Services Programme. Her role sits across the London Health and Care in the Community Cell and the Regional Digital Team. Working closely with ICS Digital, Community and Transformation leads, Isabel supports systems to bring Community Health Services up to the same level of transformation that Acute and Primary Care services have seen. Prior to this role, she worked in the national Communities and Ageing Well team and the London Digital Programme.
Ravi supports the Community Services and Urgent Community Response & Restoration. Ravi also leads on the SEL UCR accelerator Programme. At present Ravi works with London Region UEC team for two days a week as an Operations Manager to ensure the delivery of safe and quality oriented UEC services to patients across the region. Ravi’s substantive role is Contracts and Performance Manager, Specialised Commissioning, London Region.
Qura is a Project Support Officer on the Digital Community Health Services Programme. Qura previously worked as a Governance Facilitator in the Patient Safety Team at Barnet, Enfield & Haringey Mental Health Trust, where she was responsible for incident and risk management, Serious Incident and Board Level Panel Investigations. She also provided support to the Trust’s corporate division on data analysis and reporting. Her past roles include working with patients who have mental health difficulties to support with providing CBT therapy and care coordination.
Corinne has been in the NHS for over 30 years, primarily in a commissioning role. She has worked all that time in South East London and has a background in Continuing Health Care – developing policy and implementation, also Personal Health Budgets and End of Life Care. Corinne led the commissioning and quality assurance of Domiciliary Care Providers in the Borough of Lewisham. Her role in the Team will be to Lead the Enhanced Health in Care Homes Programme.
Sophia is the regional lead for Discharge and Length of Stay programme. She has a variety of experience working in different healthcare settings including provider, community and CCG, leading on complex large scale strategic transformation programmes in cardiovascular, respiratory and same day emergency care across the system. Sophia has a clinical background and has also worked as an operations lead in community. Improving patient care is a priority in her programmes with a clear commitment to innovation, learning and improvement.
Seena is a project improvement support manager for Length of Stay & Discharge and Care Homes. Seena has worked with a range of organisations such as Acute, Community, Specialist and Ambulance Trusts to drive values, improve patient care and reduce variation. She has provided strategy planning, coordination and oversight activities support to several programmes in North West London ICS which includes Outpatients Transformation Programme, MSK Clinical Network, Out of Hospital (Local Care) Programme.
Harpreet Shergill – Health & Care Digital Programme Lead
Harpreet is a pharmacist with a background in community pharmacy. He has expertise on change transformation in Health using digital as an enabler to deliver change. He has delivered programmes across Community Pharmacy, Clinical Homecare, Community Diagnostics, GP practices, Outpatients and Community Services. He is working on enabling out of hospital digital pathways in the community and to increase the digital maturity of health and care organisations across London.
Jennifer has worked in the NHS for over 12 years and has a rich portfolio of both clinical and operational experience. Her time spent working as midwife grew her passion for ensuring high standards of care for patients and a positive working environment for staff. She has worked at both regional and national level and also has experience from NHS Supply Chain. Jennifer has ample experience of project management and is working on the Digital Social Care programme.
Tyler Smith – Improvement Support Manager
Tyler is a Digital Improvement Support Manager currently project managing the implementation of the Proxy Ordering of Repeat Medications in Care Homes project, as well as supporting the implementation of other regional Digital Social Care Programmes and the London COVID Remote Monitoring Programme. Tyler has a background in health, having trained as a Dietitian and has previously worked in management consulting on various health, ageing and human services projects across the Australian Federal Government.
Sarah currently works in the Health and Care in the Community Cell as a Digital Improvement Support Manager for the DSPT Programme. Sarah has extensive experience in a range of settings including primary care, Trustees, charities, CCGs, and non-departmental public bodies in healthcare. Consequently, she has a comprehensive understanding of multiple systems. Sara’s expertise in stakeholder management and facilitation enables system partners to resolve issues together.
Dan is the regional lead for Anticipatory Care, part of the national Ageing Well programme. He is also one of the team’s PMO leads. Dan has worked on several programmes within the team, and still supports our care homes and domiciliary care workstreams. Dan has performed operational and strategic roles in the NHS, working with a range of non-NHS partners such as local authorities, schools and the voluntary sector, so has a broad understanding of systems. His stakeholder management and facilitation skills enable system partners to address issues together.
Yasir is a Project Support Officer working on Anticipatory Care, Catheter Pathways and vaccination information for Care Homes and Domiciliary Care providers, as well as PMO for the team. Yasir previously worked at St George’s Hospital for 5 years within Oncology, Breast and Cardiology in service management.
Andre leads on London region’s Better Care Fund (BCF) Programme, which runs in partnership with HLP’s UEC Improvement team, as well as London ADASS, and other regional programmes. The BCF supports integration between health and social care at local level. Andre worked with Surrey Council in Adult Social Care and Public Health. Prior to this he’s worked as a researcher at Greenpeace, a monitor for African conflict, and fleet operations at Streetcar in its early days (now Zipcar). He’ll happily talk you at length about health and care integration.
Nicole Valenzuela-Sotomayor – Better Care Fund Support Manager
Nicole is one of London’s Better Care Fund Managers. With 14 years health and care design thinking and service transformation experience at borough, HWB and regional level. Having worked on programmes across health and care integration, Emergency Planning, mental health (prevention through to acute), 3rd Sector development, estates refit/ relocations, community services development and system upgrades. She continues to be a strong advocate for staff and system empowerment, enjoys bringing colleagues together to harness the energy and skills that exist within, to develop sustainable changes for the benefit of both those that use and deliver services. She is also a Mental Health First Aider.
Our Personalised Care Team deliver a number of projects, often developed with a range of stakeholders of the social prescribing system across London, as a result of insights into challenges from those working on the frontline. All aim to support the long term, sustainable development of Social Prescribing, and embedding of the three personalised care roles in London’s health system.
Social Prescribing Innovators Programme – Applications closed 20 July 2022
The challenge: Social prescribing services face several challenges. These are often common across geographies and there is potential for innovative solutions to these to be shared and scaled. There is currently not a process to support and empower Social Prescribing Services to innovate against these challenges.
The solution: The new Social Prescribing Innovators Programme aims to support Social Prescribing services and individual Social Prescribing Link Workers across London to unblock the challenges they face in delivering social prescribing by testing and sharing innovative ways of working. This is a pilot programme, with funding up to £10k granted to individuals or groups from Social Prescribing services. Successful applicants will also benefit from a 6-month programme of support between Oct 22- Feb 23 to help deliver projects against their specified ‘challenge’.
Applications CLOSED – deadline 11:59pm 20 July 2022
Thank you to everyone who has applied and to those who have expressed an interest in the programme!
Outcomes will be communicated out to all applicants week commencing 8 August 2022
The opportunity: There is value in understanding how others are approaching the delivery of social prescribing across London, and crucial for an active network to have a facility to connect with each other.
The solution: Healthy London Partnership (HLP) will create, host and manage an online tool, in the form of a map, publishing local service models sharing how social prescribing is being delivered across London, as well as key SP contacts to enable a more active network and organic good practice sharing across London.
The opportunity: Social Prescribing is relatively new to most parts of the NHS, and as investment grows year on year, so does the workforce, the system designed to embed and develop SP as well as the maturity of the work. SPLWs bring with them a rich breadth of skills and experience, and it is crucial there are facilities to ensure they are shaping this investment, development and support to ensure social prescribing is meaningful and thrives, and their insights are valued and heard.
The solution: A community of SPLWs, that meet once a month to develop their skills as advocates of social prescribing and have an opportunity to shape pan London work related to the development and support of social prescribing.
Community Chests for Social Prescribing
The challenge: Social Prescribing would not be possible without the activities and services the voluntary sector organises and delivers. As people are referred to these services through social prescribing link works based in the health system, the VCSE sector faces an increase in referrals and complexity of needs of the people they are supporting, but rarely the funding to support this.
The solution: There are some great examples of an NHS fund making grants available to voluntary sector organisations delivering key activities social prescribers can refer to. These ‘community chests’ can be joint funded with the local authority and may support building the capacity of existing services or developing new activities that provide for unmet needs. HLP are working with NEL ICS and a number of boroughs to develop a set of case studies platforming successful examples, some coproduced pilot community chests, and a tool kit for areas wanting to develop something similar.
Developing NHS Estates as hubs for the community
The opportunity: NHS Estates have a number of renovated spaces across the UK, and are looking for ways these spaces can be utilised by the community organisations local to the sites.
The solution: A group of social innovation consultants are working with Broadwater Farm estate in Haringey and the local social prescribing service and community to explore how the space might be better used, developing some case studies of examples this work has succeeding in better connecting NHS buildings and the community, some recommendations for how the space might be better used going forward, and a toolkit for how other projects can engage the community in developing a similar plan.
Innovation Fund for Social Prescribing Services
The opportunity: Whilst SP can be tailored and targeted to meet local needs, lots of challenges and opportunities that are faced in implementing and embedding an effective service are universal and often true across London.
The solution: A programme to support social prescribing services to mitigate challenges they face by awarding grants of up to £10k to test their own solutions and new ways of working, skills to assess the impact of this innovation and a platform to share those findings with the wider London social prescribing community.
Social Welfare Legal Advice and Social Prescribing
The challenge: With finite investment in social welfare legal advice provision, there is a huge disparity in numbers of people needing support and receiving it. Many PCNs operating in areas of particular deprivation, see the opportunity to upskill SPLWs in this arena of great value to the patients they are supporting.
The solution: As part of it’s Recovery Programme, the GLA are funding HLP and Bromley by Bow to deliver social welfare legal advice training for SPLWs across London, a series of events connecting SPLWs to pan London organisations and Robust Safety Net projects (also GLA funded) that can support their work with patients. There will also be funding and support for 5 sites to host a hybrid SWLA/ SPLW role.
Supporting SPLWs and PCNs towards provision of Clinical Supervision
The challenge: Social prescribing is fairly recent introduction to primary care, and the PCNs managing the services fairly new organisations. Receiving appropriate supervision for the depth and complexity of the cases they are holding seems to be one of the most consistent challenges.
The solution: NHSE are funding 4 projects across the capital to develop a new approach to supervision that aims to ensure SPLWs are better connected to each other and to develop key people within the PCN (and local system) that can support the SPLWs to become supervisors.
Fast-Track Cities is an international initiative to end new cases of HIV by 2030. Over 200 cities across the world are part of this movement to get to zero new cases of HIV, zero preventable deaths, zero stigma and discrimination and a better quality of life for people living with HIV.
London has already made great strides towards achieving the United Nations (UN) targets for the Fast-Track Cities initiative. In 2016, for the first time in London, all the UN’s 90:90:90 targets were met. London is only the third city to achieve this target so far – joining Amsterdam and Melbourne. We have now reached:
95% of people living with HIV infection diagnosed
98% of people diagnosed receiving treatment
97% of people receiving treatment being virally suppressed.
Why is this initiative important?
HIV remains an important problem in London, with the infection impacting on Londoners more than any other part of the UK.
In 2020, there were 955 new cases of HIV, with an estimated 35,966 people living with HIV in London – almost 40 per cent of all those in the UK. Of these new cases, 349 of new diagnoses were reported among gay and bisexual and other men who have sex with men, 324 cases were among men and women who reported heterosexual sex as their probable route of infection, 14 cases were among people who inject drugs, 257 cases were among people with an undetermined exposure group and the remaining 11 were through pregnancy.
Recently, London has seen a significant fall in people newly diagnosed HIV positive, particularly in men who have sex with men. However, this fall is neither uniform across all population groups nor in all areas of the city, and rates of late diagnosis, although showing improvement, remain stubbornly high at 35 per cent. Late diagnosis significantly impacts people who are who are disproportionately affected by HIV like African, Afro-Caribbean and migrant women, trans women, gay men living with HIV who are also migrant men, men of colour and men who don’t have English as a first language.
People diagnosed late are at increased risk of developing an AIDS-defining illness and continue to have a more than 7-fold increased risk of death in the year following their diagnosis. The rate of one year mortality was 31 per 1,000 among those diagnosed late compared to 4 per 1,000 among those diagnosed promptly.
What are the challenges?
For many Londoners HIV remains a stigmatising condition that negatively impacts on quality of life. Late and undiagnosed infection rates in London remain unacceptably high (34 per cent and 10 per cent respectively) and with considerable geographical variability across the city. Prevalence varies by ethnicity and by place of residence, with disproportionately high rates among black and ethnic minority (BAME) communities in poorer areas of the city.
The Mayor and representatives from NHS England, UK Health Security Agency and Office for Health Improvement and Disparities (formerly Public Health England) and London Councils, have committed to work with partners to:
Continue work to exceed the UN’s 90:90:90 HIV targets (90 per cent of people living with HIV knowing their status, 90 per cent of people with diagnosed HIV on treatment, 90 per cent of people on treatment with suppressed viral loads)
End new HIV infections in the capital by 2030
Put a stop to HIV-related stigma and discrimination
Stop preventable deaths from HIV-related causes
Work to improve the health, quality of life and well-being of people living with HIV across the capital
The next steps for the capital include delivering the action plan developed with all the partners and the HIV community, working with the support of the Fast-Track Cities London leadership group. The action plan is a roadmap, which outlines how London will reach the Fast-Track City targets.
London also has a Fast-Track Cities dashboard through which all cities report their progress against the initiative’s targets as well as locally set objectives and goals.
The Mayor has made tackling the stigma attached to living with HIV a key priority in his Health Inequalities Strategy. Not only is it important to ensure those living with HIV can live their lives without discrimination, but the fear of stigma can be a barrier to early diagnosis, which in turn negatively impacts the quality of life of those living with the condition.
Signing up to the Fast-Track Cities initiative will bring together all those already working to tackle HIV across the capital. More joint working will help to ensure that communities affected by HIV can access the prevention, testing, treatment and support they need.
We are supporting the Mayor of London’s new citywide movement to improve mental health and wellbeing in the capital. Thrive LDN aims to encourage Londoners to step up to tackle mental health so that every person in London can live happier, healthier lives.
Everyone who lives and works in London is invited to join the movement and take action on mental health and wellbeing to make London the happiest, healthiest city in the world.
About Thrive LDN
Thrive LDN is supported by the Mayor of London and led by the London Health Board, in partnership with Greater London Authority, Healthy London Partnership, NHS England (London Region), Public Health England (London Region) and London Councils.
The movement brings together health and care leaders, residents, businesses and community and voluntary organisations to improve mental health and wellbeing in the capital.
More than two million Londoners experience some form of poor mental health every year and report a lower level of life satisfaction and self-worth than the national average. Almost 10% of children and young people living in the capital aged between five and 16 experience a mental health issue and every week two Londoners take their own lives.
In 2017, Thrive LDN launched six aspirations for the capital. These include ambitions to make London a ‘Zero Suicide’ city, the development of training for youth organisations and student societies to help improve wellbeing in young people, and the development of a new programme to raise awareness of mental health and challenge stigma and discrimination.
Since March 2020, Thrive LDN has been coordinating the public mental health response to and recovery from the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in London on behalf of the Strategic Coordination Group, Public Health England London, and wider partners.
Between April 2020 and March 2021, more than 685,000 people have taken part in projects, events and activities which the citywide movement has led or collaborated on. Just some of the activities outlined in the report include funding grassroots organisations, suicide prevention training, mental health first aid training, online webinars, sudden bereavement support, and a World Mental Health Day Festival co-developed with young Londoners.
Thrive LDN’s progress report, published on Thursday, 18 March 2021, sets out what Thrive LDN and partners have done to listen to the experiences of people whose voices are too often ignored, and respond with resources to help manage what for many Londoners has been the toughest year of their lives.
In September 2019, to mark World Suicide Prevention Day, a citywide Zero Suicide London campaign was launched by the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, to encourage Londoners to access free, online suicide prevention training.
Since then, more than a quarter of a million people across the capital have completed the training as part of the #ZeroSuicideLDN campaign.