NHS granting additional funding to support community mental health care.

Hertfordshire and West Essex Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP) residents have been selected by NHS England to receive a new £4.5 million fund in improving the specialist support available to them for the next two years.

The new funding is part of a total £70 million national fund for community mental health services, which has been allocated by NHS England to just 12 areas across the UK.

With the funding, it will focus on improving the ways in which personality disorders are treated, improving services for patients with eating disorders, testing new ways of supporting 18 to 25-year olds with mental health problems and trialling new ways to meet the needs of different communities.

Dr Geraldine O’Sullivan, consultant psychiatrist and Hertfordshire and West Essex STP clinical lead for mental health, said: “The NHS Long Term plan, published this year, places a great emphasis on the need to transform community mental health services.

“We know that good mental health is just as important as our physical well-being and I am delighted that our proposal to develop local services in our area has been approved. The strength of local partnerships has made this funding possible.

“We will use the funding to test new ways of caring, with service users, General Practice local authorities, the voluntary sector, families and carers, and local communities working together. The new approaches we use will ultimately help set the standard for patients across the country who need access to better community mental health treatments.”

NHS England/Improvement have also developed a new framework that sets out the vision for a new place-based community mental health model can be realised, and how community mental health services can be modernised.