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Birmingham and Solihull Mental health NHS Foundation Trust
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Birmingham Healthy Minds

Birmingham Healthy Minds (BHM) is a new primary care mental health service that is IAPT compliant and delivered in partnership with GPs, the mental health consortium and third sector organisations. This new service, which was launched on April 1, 2011, provides psychological therapy for adults at the earliest opportunity.

How are the Birmingham Healthy Minds teams organised?

There are three Birmingham Healthy Minds teams which cover Birmingham East and North, South and Heart of Birmingham zones. The teams – made up of support workers, psychological wellbeing practitioners, mental health practitioners, therapist and clinical psychologists – offer NICE approved psychological interventions within primary care at steps 2 to 4a of the stepped care model.

Birmingham Healthy Minds

What these teams do?

Birmingham Healthy Minds focuses on supporting people’s capacity to maintain their psychological resilience through directed self-learning, computerised cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), psycho-educational groups and psychological therapies, where necessary. We accept referrals from GPs for people 16 years upwards who are experiencing a common mental health disorder, mainly around anxiety and depression.

Our partners

A big feature of our work is our partnership links with a number of third sector organisations such as St Martin’s in the Bullring, Acacia Perinatal Support, Immigrant Counselling and Psychotherapy (ICAP), Pattigift, and My Time. By working in close partnership with these organisations, we aim to increase access to services in communities which may have experienced difficulty in accessing psychological therapies and reduce stigma around mental health where it exists.

Demand for the service

Birmingham Healthy Minds Service is already attracting a huge demand of around 1,500 new referrals per month. This does mean demand outweighs capacity but we are working very hard to ensure everyone is assessed and receives the appropriate service. In order to do this successfully, we are seeking support from our GPs to ensure that step 1 of the stepped care model - Watchful Waiting - is taking place at surgeries and where this happens effectively, it will help us manage the throughput of people who really need to be seen by our service at steps 2 -4a. 

From October 1, 2011, Birmingham Healthy Minds services across the city can be contacted via one telephone number - 0121 301 2525. 

Useful links

Referral advice from NICE for GPs on common mental health disorders:
http://www.nice.org.uk/usingguidance/referraladvice/detail.jsp?action=raByGuidance&guidanceId=13476

New NICE guidance for GPs on identifying mental health conditions in primary care, including anxiety and depression:
http://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/CG123

For more information about the Birmingham Healthy Minds team contact:

Terry Downes, service manager on 0798 588 2307 or
Kully Ingram, partnership manager on 0798 588 2429.