Bristol’s crisis line set to close

August 18, 2016 at 5:35 pm

crisis line closure

Bristol Mental Health’s (BMH) crisis line is set to close at the end of November, it has been announced.

Bristol Independent Mental Health Network (BIMHN) are deeply concerned over the proposals, and are in close contact with both BMH and the Bristol Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) regarding the news.

BMH’s reason for the proposed closure, which is to take effect from 30th November 2016, is that the majority of calls being made to the service were by those “requiring advice and support rather than specialist intervention – the intended purpose of the line”.

This calls into question whether enough is being done by service providers to ensure people know how to reach the right mental health support and treatment, including access to preventative services.

We feel that there needs to be more improved signposting, with clear and easily accessible information available for people wanting to use mental health services and seek support.

We want to ensure that any changes to the crisis line are in the best interests of those currently accessing services, and those that may access Bristol’s mental health services in the the future.

We have received mixed feedback from users of the crisis line about how helpful it has been. However, it is absolutely vital that there is an easily accessible and supportive service in place for those in times of crisis.

BMH wrote in their statement: 

“Bristol Mental Health (BMH) is making some changes to its crisis line to ensure that people in crisis receive the support they need. An extensive review of the service was carried out in the early part of 2016, with participation from service users, staff and commissioners.

“The review found that the majority of calls made to the line were better answered elsewhere, or made by those requiring advice and support rather than specialist intervention – the intended purpose of the crisis line.

“Therefore a decision was made by BMH (the provider of the crisis line), Bristol CCG and service users to close the crisis line, effective 30th November 2016, and to identify other resources.

“This decision was made as part of a wider review that will improve the balance between planned and unplanned interventions within local mental health services.

“Both BMH and Bristol CCG are working closely with service users and carers to ensure they identify other resources to best meet the needs of those who access the line.

“Further information will be provided about this over the coming months. As ever, BMH will work to achieve the best mental health and wellbeing for the people of Bristol.

“For more information about the closure of the line please contact or 0117 919 5782/5606.”

Have you accessed or attempted to access the crisis line? We would like to hear about your experiences. Get in touch by emailing BIMHN Secretary, Tom Renhard at . Any comments will be anonymised.

BIMHN members will also be holding a meeting to further discuss the proposed closure of the crisis line, and our next steps.

August 18, 2016 at 5:35 pm | News | No comment

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