Primary Care Sexual Health Services Development – Lambeth, Southwark and Lewisham (LSL)

The LSL Sexual Health Strategy outlined the strategic vision to improve the sexual health and wellbeing of Lambeth, Southwark and Lewisham residents. This included increasing access to sexual health services across the boroughs.

Lambeth, Southwark and Lewisham Councils currently commission a range of sexual health services from Primary Care (General Practice and Pharmacy).  To help inform the future commissioning of these services a stakeholder engagement event is taking place on 25th August 2015 in order to discuss this important initiative.

The event runs from 10am – 1pm (registration from 9.30am) and will be taking place at Coin Street Neighbourhood Centre, SE1 9NH.

Please, book your place at:


The European Mental Health Action Plan 2013–2020

The European Mental Health Action Plan 2013–2020 report : Mental disorders are one of the top public health challenges in the WHO European Region, affecting about 25% of the population every year. In all countries, mental health problems are much more prevalent among the people who are most deprived. The WHO European Region therefore faces diverse challenges affecting both the mental well-being of the population and the provision and quality of care for people with mental health problems.

The European Mental Health Action Plan focuses on seven interlinked objectives and proposes effective action to strengthen mental health and well-being. Investing in mental health is essential for the sustainability of health and socioeconomic policies in the European Region. The Action Plan corresponds to the four priority areas of the European policy framework for health and wellbeing, Health 2020, and will contribute directly to its implementation.

Download           English

Loneliness and Isolation: Guidance for Local Authorities and Commissioners

The Campaign to End Loneliness has launched a new online resource, Loneliness and Isolation: Guidance for Local Authorities and Commissioners.  The new guidance provides adult social care, clinical commissioning groups and public health teams with useful resources on planning how to address loneliness experienced by older people in their local populations.  Loneliness and isolation are harmful to our health: research shows that lacking social connections is as damaging to our health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day.  Approximately ten per cent of those aged 65 and over experience loneliness all or most of the time and this can be costly to local health and social care services. Lonely individuals are more likely to visit their GP, undergo early entry into residential care and use accident and emergency services independent of chronic illness.   The guidance includes: Strategy development

Attitudes to Mental Illness 2014 Research Report (15/07/15)

Latest research shows a record number of people in England saying they would be willing to live, work and have a relationship with someone who has experience of a mental health problem. Public attitudes have also improved by 6% over the last three years since phase 2 of Time to Change began, which equates to more than 2.5 million people with improved attitudes towards people with mental health problems.  Generally, the survey shows that people are becoming more tolerant and understanding of people with mental health issues. Nine in ten people (91%) agreed that we need to adopt a more tolerant attitude towards people with mental health problems in our society, and 78% agreed that people with mental health problems have for too long been the subject of ridicule.


Study finds rise in suicide among males in mental health care

he Annual Report 2015, which presents findings from 2003 to 2013, highlights areas of healthcare where safety should be strengthened.  There has been a 29% rise among men who die by suicide while under the care of mental health services in the UK since 2006, a report by The University of Manchester’s National Confidential Inquiry into Suicide and Homicide by People with Mental Illness (NCISH). During the report period, 2003-2013, the largest rise was seen in middle aged men 45-54 years old, where there has been a 73% increase since 2006, which may be driven by increases in risk factors such as alcohol and economic pressures.

Suicide in men is sometimes blamed on a reluctance to ask for help but the figures we are reporting are for men who are receiving mental health care. Our findings suggest the drivers of these increases may be risk factors such as (a) alcohol – alcohol misuse is a common antecedent but most patients are not in contact with alcohol services, (b) economic pressures  unemployment having become a more frequent antecedent of patient suicide in most UK countries. It may also result from increased use of hanging, an especially dangerous method.

In 2013 there were 445 mental health patients who were reported to have major physical illness and who died by suicide – this figure has risen since 2008, though the rise may reflect a greater awareness of physical illness among staff.

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SLaM, the local main mental health provider of inpatient and community services, will be inspected by the CQC during the week of 23 September 2015.

SLaM, the local main mental health provider of inpatient and community services, will be inspected by the CQC during the week of 23 September 2015. The Healthwatch partners in Southwark and Lewisham will collect patient and carer feedback and experiences to help guide this inspection. CQC are the national inspectors of all health and social care services, and all hospitals must be registered and inspected by them. Before any inspection, CQC asks for patient feedback from local Healthwatches and other stakeholders, to help inform their inspection, i.e. what areas, services and departments they should be focusing on. We will be submitting a report based on patient and public feedback. Healthwatch  wants to hear from patients, carers and family members, who have recently (within the last year) used mental health services provided by SLaM. These include: any inpatient services and any outpatient and psychiatric liaison services at hospital sites.

How can you share your experiences with us?                                 You can either:

Wednesday 29th July 11am – 4pm:  Visit us at the ‘Is Mental Health Still Taboo’ event at the Karibu Education Centre, 7 Gresham Road, Brixton, SW9 7PH

The deadline for responses: Monday 3rd August 2015 at 9am

Healthwatch southwark

Understanding the role of literacy in public health

“Literacy is a stronger predictor of individual’s health status than income, employment status, education level and racial or ethnic group.” (Weiss, cited in WHO, 2013)

In this paper the National Literacy Trust Hubs: Understanding the role of literacy in public health  presents the case that low literacy negatively impacts on the health of communities in the UK. The inability to access and interpret information stemming from a lack of basic skills presents individuals with a fundamental challenge to take control of their own health.  As a result, health literacy skills should be considered an integral part of any public health strategy, and it is essential that literacy skills underpin such strategies. Improving health literacy will empower communities, reduce health inequalities, and reduce pressure on our public services. For more information about the National Literacy Trust Hubs, click here.

NationalliteracyTrustOur research shows that literacy skills are a fundamental part of empowering people to stay healthy by preventing disease and taking prescribed treatment correctly and should be included as an integral part of any public health strategy”  J. Douglas NLT Director

Rethinking the Public Health Workforce- a new report by RSPH

15 million workers including firemen, hairdressers and postal workers could form part of “wider public health workforce”

With only 40,000 people estimated to be part of the core public health workforce, and in light of the crisis in lifestyle health issues, this latest report calls for anyone who has “the opportunity or ability to positively impact health and wellbeing through their work” to join the wider public health workforce. The Royal Society of Public Health (RSPH) calls for massive expansion to the workforce supporting the public’s health.

The report sets out some areas where, with appropriate training, the wider workforce could support public health:

  • Point of care testing including body fat measurements, finger prick testing, blood pressure, BMI.
  • Behaviour change programmes, healthy conversations, and signposting the public on to more specialist services.
  • Social prescribing including screening the public for lifestyle health conditions such as inactivity, low level anxiety or social isolation.
  • Assisting the public to overcome physical and emotional barriers to health advice including access to GPs and initiating conversations about health

Read the full report ‘Rethinking the Public Health Workforce’


Teenagers Translated: Helping Parents Promote Resilient Teens

This is a course will provide parents with a refined awareness of what works with teenagers and why. Over the course of the day attendees will develop an increased understanding of:

  • What is normal teenage behaviour and what points to more worrying signals
  • The underlying emotional state that drives problem behaviours, and how to positively influence this
  • What is helpful and what is not when trying to offer the right sort of support for a child
  • How to use daily interactions to positively mould a child’s development

Further details about the course are available on the brochure :

View brochure     Email:

One day course 09:30 – 16:00 – 28th September 2015  ORTUS learning and events centre

Teenagers Translated