NHS in Leeds urges people to look after mental health during coronavirus lockdown

Health chiefs are urging Leeds residents take care of their mental health during the coronavirus lockdown and are reminding people that a wide range of help and support is available.

Thursday, 16th April 2020, 6:00 am
The NHS in Leeds is urging people to look after their mental health during the coronavirus lockdown.

Healthcare professionals in the city are keen that people access support when they need it especially as the impact of coronavirus is felt in many parts of people’s lives.

People could be worried due to loss of income, changes in jobs and the effect on people’s relationships.

Some people could also be affected by social isolation and loneliness.

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Dr Gwyn Elias, GP and clinical Lead for mental health for NHS Leeds Clinical Commissioning Group, said “We know that many people will be feeling anxious and worried right now for a number of reasons.

"It is really important that you ask for help if you are worried about your mental health.

"We have lots of different services in the city that will be tailored to meet your needs. The quickest way to see which services are available to you is through the Coronavirus Mental Health Information Hub at www.mindwell-leeds.org.uk/coronavirus

“If you are feeling very distressed or hopeless, talking to someone can help. You could try talking to a family member or friend, if this doesn’t feel right there are people who want to

talk to you and can help. You can contact NHS 111 either by calling or going online www.111.nhs.uk.

"The Samaritans are also open 24 hours a day. In Leeds we also have free helplines, details can be found on the Mindwell website in the “I need help now" section.

“If you have had previous contact with specialist mental health services in Leeds, you may have a crisis plan with contact details. If you don’t have a crisis plan or are unable to find it you can call the single point of access team on 0300 300 1485. If your life is in immediate danger call 999 now.”

For the latest information on coronavirus, visit www.nhs.uk/coronavirus.

For people wanting to help people in their community, advice on doing this safely can be found on the Government’s website www.gov.uk/safehelp

As well as contacting their own GP, services that continue to provide mental health support include:

- Leeds Mental Wellbeing Service: Anyone aged over 17 and registered with a Leeds GP can use the online therapy courses and self-management tools which are

available at any time day and night to help with a wide range of issues including tress and anxiety, mindfulness, depression and bereavement. Help is available immediately at: https://leeds.omnitherapy.org/

- Leeds Mind Peer Support offers online sessions so that people can talk to others msharing personal experience and empathy, focuses on strengths, and developing

skills and strategies to maintain wellbeing. People can join the online support groups by visiting www.leedsmind.org.uk/our-services/peer-support/about-peersupport/

- MindWell, the mental health website for people in Leeds, has launched a Coronavirus Mental Health Information Hub which will act as a portal, bringing

together information about mental health and Covid-19 for people in Leeds. The information can be accessed through www.mindwell-leeds.org.uk which includes a

full directory of services people can access as well as national services includind the Every Mind Matters” wellbeing plan.

- Children and young people worried or anxious about the coronavirus outbreak can visit the Mindmate website for information and support www.mindmate.org.uk

- Anyone experiencing a crisis can contact the Well-bean Hope in a Crisis Café via the Mindwell website.at www.mindwell-leeds.org.uk/professionals/gps/guidance-and-referral-links/dial-house. The cafe is open seven nights a week from 6pm to 12am. The service is currently operating all

one-to-one support over the phone and face-to-face support via Zoom which can be downloaded free of charge on any android phone.

- If anyone feels they may be at risk of harming themselves or others they should call 999 or visit the nearest accident and emergency department.