COVID-19 Service Update
During the Covid-19 pandemic the mental health advocacy team has continued to be available throughout the Covid19 pandemic providing statutory IMHA services to those in inpatient and community settings within Croydon, and non-statutory mental health advocacy in Croydon inpatient and community settings.
Offering a blended service of face-to-face versus video conferencing sessions throughout. Based on the current local mental health trust (SLAM) and national government guidance, as well as carefully risk assessing our staff and workplaces, the advocacy team is now able to offer inpatient advocacy clients a choice of face-to-face attendance by an advocate or remote working options, whichever is their preference.
We are constantly reviewing our community service provision and at this time this part of the service continues to be remote working only.
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.