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Birmingham and Solihull Mental health NHS Foundation Trust
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NHS innovations to reduce mental health crises in Birmingham and Solihull

Published: 11/12/2017
Frontline mental health services in Birmingham and Solihull are leading the way in digital innovation to help predict and prevent mental health crises.

Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust (BSMHFT), working with partners including Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, Midlands and Lancashire Commissioning Support Unit, Telefonica Alpha, West Midlands Academic Health Science Network, West Midlands Ambulance Service and West Midlands Police, are developing advanced technologies, services and pathways of care through the RAIDPlus project.

As part of the Department of Health and NHS England ‘Test Bed’ programme, RAIDPlus will support people who are experiencing a deterioration in their mental health by harnessing pioneering technology to help address some of the most complex issues facing patients, and healthcare professionals, in mental health.
That technology is being developed in partnership with Alpha, an innovation facility established by Telefonica, the leading global telecoms company. Alpha’s role is to analyse historic data and develop ways to predict the likelihood of mental health crisis, with the ultimate aim of helping to provide earlier interventions.

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John Short, Chief Executive Officer at Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The impact on a person’s health and social wellbeing when their mental health declines in to crisis is immeasurable, causing distress and anxiety for the person and for those who care for them.

“We already have strong, collaborative working partnerships with police, ambulance and research colleagues that help us to deliver complex urgent, crisis and acute services for people living with mental ill health in Birmingham and Solihull.

“Enhancing existing care through new partnerships allows the creation of ground-breaking innovations that will help to predict those who are most at risk of experiencing a mental health crisis, design innovative care that will change the way we deliver our care, and reduce the incidence and intensity of mental health crises.”

Oliver Harrison, CEO Alpha Health, said: “The healthcare sector will change fundamentally in the coming decades as a result of increasing demands and the opportunity presented by the digital revolution. The potential to predict and prevent instances of mental health through the conception and delivery of breakthrough technology is significant, especially for service users and their families and friends. We are hopeful that our collaboration on the RAIDPlus project will be a positive step forward in positively impacting the lives of those with mental health conditions.”  

RAIDPlus, alongside six other NHS England and Department of Health ‘Test Beds’, came together to present their progress so far at NHS England’s quarterly ‘Test Bed’ conference in Birmingham on Tuesday 5 December 2017.

All technologies, innovations and pathways of care will be evaluated and tested to ensure that safe and efficient new models of care are available to other NHS mental health trusts.