"Out of hours service, Nottingham city"

(as a staff member posting for a patient/service user),

I was struggling with very bad suicidal thoughts and thoughts of self harm I coped as long as I could without contacting anyone but it got to the point that if I did not speak to someone then I Knew that I was going to do one or the other or maybe both so as I have been told many times that if I am struggling them there is always someone at the other end of the phone so I plucked up the courage to ring the out of hours service.

the call was answered by a member of the county team, I told her that I was really struggling and she said that all the city team were out on visits but she would get them to call me when they got back in but it may be up to an hour so I was left to fight with my thoughts alone.

I waited and waited and waited for the phone to ring telling myself that they would call just to hold on to that thought I waited and waited but the call never came I felt that I could no longer fight on my own.

I feel that if they cannot do what they say they are going to do then they either should not say these things or even be in the job.

I am the one that has to live with the consequences of the things that I have done to get relieve from these thoughts that have over taken me and I feel that they do not care. It makes me feel like they won't even care if I live or die.

I have mostly had only good things to say about them before as they have always supported me quite well but at the moment am feeling let down and very alone.

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Response from Jane Danforth, Involvement Team , Involvement & Experience, Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust

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I'm really sorry to hear that you feel so let down and alone. I have passed your posting on for comment to the team.

Thank you for feeding back as it's very important to the Trust to hear from you when things have gone wrong.

I hope you will feel better soon and that we can work together to address this issue.

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Response from Jane Danforth, Involvement Team , Involvement & Experience, Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust

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Dear Hector

We would like to apologise that you did not get the response you required from our service. Calls to the crisis service are responded to by workers from a city or county team, whilst it is preferable for the appropriate team deal with a service users call, any worker should be able to respond to someone requiring support. We will ensure that the teams are aware that this has occurred and remind them of our protocols to provide support to callers. We hope this experience does not prevent you from using the service again in the future should you feel the need to.

Jane Marlow, Service Manager AMH

City Community and Residential Services

Adult Mental Health Service

Highbury Hospital Rowan Unit 1st Floor Highbury Road Bulwell Nottingham


Dear Hector

The out of hours service is jointly operated by City ACAT, County CRHT and City Recovery Home Treatment. While for continuity reasons it is preferable for a worker from the appropriate team to take a call, any worker should be able and willing to offer support. I am disappointed and concerned that this did not happen here. I will obviously remind the teams of the protocols and instruct them that they must accept calls of this type and offer appropriate support in the absence of a worker from the other team.

Chris Snowdon - Team Leader CRHT ( Crisis resolution Home Treatment)

County South.

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Update posted by hector (a staff member posting for a patient/service user)

Thankyou for your swift response to my posting, As I said usually they have supported me well but it has made me feel that I need to be at a critical point before I will put my faith in them again.

I am constantly being reminded that I need to phone should I get intrusive thoughts of suicide or self harm but I feel that there is no point should I not get the support.

I feel really angry and let down by the service as it lead to me self harming and taking an overdose which might not have happened if the person on the other end of the phone had just taken five minutes to listen to how helpless I was feeling.