Home Health Knowsley Health and Wellbeing Board focuses on mental health provision in the borough.

Knowsley Health and Wellbeing Board focuses on mental health provision in the borough.

by Guy Murphy

The Knowsley Health and Wellbeing Board focussed on mental health and services available to Knowsley residents at the latest meeting on Tuesday 21 November.

Split into two areas of discussion, the first part provided an overview of Merseycare NHS trust community mental health programme for adults and the implications for Knowsley.

Board members agreed a number of actions relating to improving the promotion of the services available via the Merseycare NHS Trust Community Mental Health programme. The Board also requested that further information was made available about the mental health offer for children and young people.

In part two of the discussion, the board was provided with an update on the implementation of the Prevention Concordat for Better Mental Health, with a commitment made for each Trust to develop and strengthen their actions.

The Board was provided an update on commissioned sexual health services in Knowsley, which included the sharing of early findings from a review undertaken to make sure that services are meeting the needs of the local population, whilst providing value for money.  The overwhelming insight received from the public, service users and professionals was the need to improve communication about services and accessibility.

It was recognised in the meeting that there were opportunities for more joint working in the commissioning of sexual health services across NHS and Knowsley Council, which will be explored further.

Other key items on the agenda included:

Public Health Annual Report

Published by Knowsley Council’s Director of Public Health, Dr Sarah McNulty, the focus of her independent report was the cost-of-living crisis and why it was a public health issue. The report highlighted that while the cost-of-living crisis may have affected most households it has not impacted everyone equally and has contributed towards increasing existing health inequalities and worsening health and wellbeing.

You can read more on the report here.

The Healthwatch Knowsley Annual Report

Representatives from Healthwatch Knowsley provided an overview of the annual report to board members. The report highlighted the ongoing work being undertaken to support residents as they try to recover from the impact of COVID-19 pandemic, along with the ongoing challenges of long-term deprivation and the cost-of-living crisis.

However, Healthwatch Knowsley continues to provide vital community support for residents, including engaging with residents to ensure that their voices are head by local leaders and health organisations.

You can read the report here.

Cllr Christine Bannon, Knowsley Council Cabinet Member for Health, said: “It is absolutely vital that our residents can access the mental health services they need, when they need them. Partners working collaboratively is absolutely key to this.

“I was pleased to see that we are making good progress on the implementation of the Prevention Concordat for Better Mental Health and I note the commitments made by partners to continue this work.”

The Knowsley Health and Wellbeing Board is made up of representatives from Knowsley Council, NHS, Healthwatch Knowsley, Knowsley Engagement Forum, Knowsley Youth Service and the Community and Voluntary Sector.