£15 million boost for local mental health crisis services

People at risk of a mental health crisis will be able to access new support services under plans to give projects across the country a share of a £15 million fund

The Beyond Places of Safety scheme will fund clinics, crisis cafés and other community services designed to prevent people from reaching crisis point, as well as develop new approaches to support those who do.

51 projects will receive a cash boost to improve support. They will do this by:

• integrating health and care support with other services such as housing advice, addiction services and counselling
• improving links with local voluntary and community sector partners
• providing safe and secure spaces in the community for those experiencing distress

Timely support will help relieve pressures on hospitals by reducing unnecessary visits to A&E for those experiencing a crisis. The projects also include measures to strengthen the long-term support available to those at risk of a mental health crisis and to help prevent relapse.

Jackie Doyle-Price, Minister for Mental Health and Inequalities, said:

"The last place anyone experiencing a mental health crisis should be is in a busy A&E department let alone a police cell.

"are funding a range of innovative local projects that will provide a safety net for those at risk of mental health crisis and make sure they receive the care they need in a safe and secure setting. This builds on our previous grant scheme and will strengthen essential services to help prevent people from reaching crisis point, whilst improving support for those who do."

The Beyond Places of Safety fund was launched last year by the Prime Minister and follows the success of a previous scheme that helped to develop hospital-based ‘places of safety’ for people experiencing a crisis to avoid them ending up in police cells. Since this scheme started, the number of detentions in police cells under the Mental Health Act has fallen by over 90%.

As part of the Improving Places of Safety scheme, nearly 50 projects received funding, including:

City of York – Safe Haven 
Humber NHS Foundation Trust