COVID-19 Service Update
During the Covid-19 pandemic the mental health advocacy team is still open to new referrals and new enquiries via the same telephone and email address as we always have been. In light of the government guidelines and taking into account the risk to service users and patients, we have temporarily suspended all face-to-face meetings and ward visits, we are providing services remotely via telephone, email and teleconferencing technology.
If you require representation or a conversation with a mental health advocate please contact us as soon as possible by calling 0208 763 6730 or email us on firstname.lastname@example.org. During this pandemic the advocacy team are responding promptly to emails, messages and voicemails.
Sometimes people find it difficult to express concerns about their treatment or care while they are in hospital or living in the community. It can be particularly difficult if you are on a ‘section’ or if this is your first time in hospital. You have the right to be heard; your opinions should be listened to by the professional staff. An advocate can help. Our Advocacy Service operates independently of the mental health services. We can help by listening to you and helping you have your voice heard, and empowering you to speak for yourself. We can support you at ward rounds and Care Programme Approach meetings or when discussing your treatment plan with your doctors and nurses or social workers. We provide clear information about rights, medication and any aspect of treatment while in hospital. We can support you in gaining legal advice and representation if necessary. We can signpost you to other services who can provide support to meet your needs.
Making a formal complaint
You may wish to make a formal complaint about your experience, it could be beneficial to you to speak with an advocate about the avenues available to you, such as the mental health trusts complaints procedures and processes and which step would be the most appropriate for you to take in effectively addressing your issue.
The team have devised a complaint letter template which can be downloaded, to assist those in composing and structuring their own complaints. This resource is available to you provided by the advocacy team.