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CAMHS First Contact Mental Health Practitioner

Tees Esk & Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust
£32,306 to £39,027 a year pro rata per annum
Closing date
12 Aug 2022

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Band 6
Contract Type
Full Time
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An exciting opportunity has arisen for a full time enthusiastic, motivated and caring First Contact Mental Health Practitioner to work with children and young people in primary care, within the expanding multidisciplinary team of the Whitby Coast and Moors Primary Care Network (PCN). Together with Tees Esk and Wear Valleys (TEWV) NHS Foundation Trust, the PCN is working to transform local community mental health services for young people with mental health problems. The PCN is made up of the historic port town of Whitby and local coastal and moorland villages with a strong sense of community.

Feedback informs us that a young person's first contact with services for emotional and mental health support is a critical part of their journey to recovery. We see this new role as fundamental to the development of innovative and integrated mental health services within our local community, relieving pressure from the GP's and allowing additional time for mental health problems to be fully explored. The role will help us achieve our shared ambition of 'no wrong door' and the delivery of the right care, in the right place, at the right time, and with the right service.

NMC Mental Health Nurses, Social Workers (England), HCPC Occupational Therapist encouraged to apply.

Main duties of the job

You will work as an autonomous practitioner within friendly teams of GPs, other First Contact Mental Health Practitioners, ANPs, Practice Nurses, and Pharmacists. You will develop close working relationships and be a valued member of the Primary Care Team. You will collaborate with other professionals, both internal to, and external from, the PCN. Your role will involve offering specialist mental health advice and providing expert clinical care for young people with a range of mental health needs. You will work closely with partner organisations within the local mental health system to ensure that those with complex mental illness do not fall between gaps in services. You will also contribute to safe and effective transitions in care between Child & Adolescent and Adult Mental Health services, where appropriate. You will improve access by being a 'first contact child and adolescent mental health practitioner', undertaking triage, assessments, brief interventions, and reviews. You will contribute to networking and navigation expertise, enabling access to a range of appropriate mental health support across the community system.

About us

Primary care networks (PCN) have been created to help integrate primary care with secondary and community services and provide care at greater scale by sharing staff and some funding.

Whitby Coast and Moors PCN comprises 5 GP practices. Together our practices serve a 26,800 patient population. The practices hold both Personal Medical Services and General Medical Services Contracts and are approved training practices. We cover a large rural area which presents challenges in providing fair access to high quality services. There are areas of deprivation and unmet clinical and social need across the area. We also serve a larger seasonal temporary population as a popular holiday destination.

The practices are keen to develop their services and staff teams, being innovative training and research practices. Whitby Coast and Moors PCN is ideal for those wishing to develop a portfolio career while maintaining a superb work/life balance.

Our diverse team is made up of GPs, Advanced Clinical Practitioners, Pharmacists, Nurses, Health Care Assistants, Social Prescribers, Care Coordinators and Mental Health Practitioners and a range of support and managerial staff.

We are committed to providing a safe and supportive environment to work in where you will have a voice, feel appreciated and listened to.

The successful candidate will be well supported, work autonomously and have day to day responsibility for their clinics and workload.

Job description Job responsibilities

This is a new, exciting, and innovative post to support the needs of the local population living a range of mental health difficulties. The role holder will fulfil a first contact specialist mental health role within GP Practices across the Primary Care Network (PCN), seeing patients who would otherwise have traditionally seen a GP. Within the primary care setting, the role holder will work in a collaborative and multi-agency way. This will contribute to the safe and effective day to day operation of the PCN and the efficient and timely management of clinical enquiries and decision making.

The post will sit within the GP practices and will facilitate the interface between Primary Care and Secondary Mental Health Services to provide specialist advice and support, assessment, treatment, education, and solution-focused approaches to the local Primary Care Teams, for patients and carers.

The role will offer expertise in networking and navigation to promote ease of access to a range of specialist mental health support services. This ensures that each person, once assessed, receives the best possible care in the right place at the right time and by the right supporting service.

The post holder will be an effective member of the multi-disciplinary team. They will be professionally accountable and responsible for patient care, undertaking initial assessment with signposting to appropriate services, or providing time-limited psycho-social therapeutic interventions directly, in e.g. GP surgeries, patients homes and other primary care settings. This will include providing clinical advice to GPs such as specialist opinion or prescribing support (within the parameters of the Non-medical prescribing/NMP framework).

To maintain an individual caseload and act as a specialist advisor to GPs, fulfilling a pathway management function and providing short term interventions and support, in collaboration with GPs and other practice based mental health workers. To ensure that the caseload is well managed, and that care and treatment is provided in line with practice standards.

To support the establishment of partnerships and networks with key stakeholders across the PCN and the wider mental health care system. To offer advice to, or obtain advice for, the Primary Care Team on appropriate interventions and on-going patient care management.

To develop links and foster a culture of partnership between Primary Care Teams and Mental Health Services, promoting clear communication and access to specialist knowledge and advice.

To facilitate joint working with PCN, Secondary Care providers, and Voluntary Care Sector to increase the range of services/interventions available to the communities served.

To provide clinical advice, consultation, and support to other care providers within primary, secondary, voluntary and statutory services as required.

To attend PCN meetings and work with PCN members to develop and implement joint governance and clinical multidisciplinary forums.

To assume a leadership role and responsibility within the existing Mental Health multidisciplinary team (MDT) meetings across the PCN.

To provide support, education and guidance of common mental health problems and their management to colleagues across the MDTs so they develop their skills and confidence in assessment and treatment of mental health needs.

To collate and organise contemporaneous information about opportunities and resources in the local area which may be of benefit to clients referred to the service (e.g. voluntary and community organisations, educational and recreational opportunities).

To facilitate sign posting to other appropriate services and occasionally undertake very short-term interventions for clients with mild to moderate mental health difficulties (average length of time expected to be 6 weeks). Working alongside the PCN staff which could include a care coordination team and social prescribing link worker.

To be professionally accountable and responsible for patient care, providing brief, time-limited therapeutic interventions in GP surgeries, patients homes and other primary care settings.

To ensure systems/pathways are in place to enable smooth transition between primary care and secondary mental health services.

To work closely with Primary Care Network, GPs and Social Prescribers/other practice-based mental health workers within the locality regarding the mental health needs of their adult practice population.

Person Specification Experience Essential
  • oSignificant experience working with people with mental ill health in a community setting.
  • Working collaboratively with service users and their families/carers.
  • oMentoring students on practice placement experience
  • oWorking in a multi-disciplinary team
  • oExperience and involvement with quality improvement activities
  • Experience working in primary care.
  • Experience working in a multiagency setting.
  • Leadership or management experience
Knowledge Essential
  • oDemonstrable knowledge to post-graduate level of evidence-based practice in caring for patients in the designated field.
  • oDemonstrable knowledge and experience of delivering psycho-social interventions and approaches
  • oKnowledge of Stepped Care model.
  • oUnderstanding of relevant legislation (e.g. Mental Health Act, Mental Capacity Act).
  • oDetailed understanding of Safeguarding and its application in practice
  • oClinical Risk Assessment and Management and its application in practice
  • oClinical Governance and its application in practice
  • oUnderstanding of psychological models of care and treatment
Qualifications Essential
  • oCurrent professional registration NMC or registration with the appropriate professional body.
  • Ability to evidence of Continuing Professional Development since registration.
  • oCertificate in mentorship, teaching & assessing in clinical practice as appropriate to own profession
  • oClinical Supervisor
  • oLeadership or management qualification
  • oPost-graduate qualification in a relevant area
  • oIf appropriate to professional registration NMP (or willing to obtain)
Skills Essential
  • oCommunicate complex and sensitive information effectively to patients, carers/families and all members of the multidisciplinary team.
  • oWork effectively as part of a multidisciplinary team and undertake lead professional responsibilities
  • oWork effectively across complex organisations, pathways and services
  • o Able to engage with vulnerable people and work effectively in distressing and challenging circumstances.

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