A Lancashire health organisation providing mental health services has teamed up with a national charity to launch a project to improve services for people with schizophrenia and psychosis.
Rethink Mental Illness has joined forces with Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust for the project, which aims to change the lives of people with mental health issues.
The Rethink Mental Illness Innovation Network, launched in the Houses of Commons, will see the trust join with the charity to test new services for people affected by severe mental illness.
It will focus on issues like improving mental health hospital care, tackling physical health problems and helping people with mental illness get into employment.
It follows a report last year from the charity’s Schizophrenia Commission, which revealed catastrophic failings in the care of people with schizophrenia and psychosis.
The project will transform mental health services for people in Lancashire, and put some of the Commission’s recommendations into practice
Jane Hughes, director of communications and campaigns at Rethink Mental Illness, said: “Last year the Schizophrenia Commission showed that care and treatment for patients is nowhere near good enough. It highlighted that people with schizophrenia are dying 15 to 20 years earlier than the general population and that only seven per cent are able to get a job.
“Too many people fall through gaps in the system and end up in prison or homeless.”
“We have launched the project with Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust to help us find out what services work best for people with schizophrenia and psychosis and to put them in place in the NHS.
“It could make a massive difference to people in Lancashire who are affected by mental illness.”
Dr Arokia Antonysamy, clinical director for the adult mental health network at Lancashire Care, said: “As a trust we are extremely proud to be part of this national project.”