Over 400 people in Essex who have been recovering from mental illness were helped to get back into work by Employment Specialists at Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust (EPUT) in the past year.
441 people were supported in getting back to work after recovering from their illness and a further 361 people who were experiencing difficulties to do with their employment were supported to resolve the issues and stay at work by EPUT staff.
Appropriate work is good for our health and wellbeing according to the Work, Health and Disability Green Paper: ‘Improving Lives’.
At EPUT we support our patients and service users to find work, and they have told us that their health improves as a result of being in employment.
Working in partnership with the charities Employ-Ability and Walking With The Wounded, EPUT has Employment Specialists within community teams who provide evidence based support to anyone who wants help to find work; with a designated worker for Veterans.
Raza Ahmed, Vocational Services Manager at EPUT said: “Helping people to get into work or stay at work has a tremendously positive impact on their recovery.
“We follow a model of service delivery called Individual, Placement and Support (IPS) which is universally regarded as the most effective way to deliver employment support in mental health settings.
“We are recognised as a ‘National Centre of Excellence’ by the Centre for Mental Health, for adherence to IPS and the quality and consistency of our service.
“We also help people already in work, if there are problems to do with their job that is having a negative impact on their mental health.”
“The Five Year Forward View for Mental Health stated where good quality services like ours exist, there should be investment to expand services to help more people.
“ We were successful with a recent bid for additional funds and thanks to NHS England investment we are in the process of expanding this highly successful, highly valued and in demand service.
“We are also utilising our experience and expertise to help our neighbouring counties to establish high quality employment support services.”
EPUT also has another service called Heads Up, which is funded by the Big Lottery Fund and European Social Fund.
This service supports people who do not need any clinical input from the Trust but still need help to find work. The service is staffed by Peer Support Workers, people who have ‘lived experience’ of mental health challenges and unemployment.