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News and Events

On this page you'll be able to find out what's going on around the Trust and catch up on all the latest Trust news.

Memory Matters project picks up local award

DEMENTIA FRIENDLY AWARDS twoBlack Country Partnership are celebrating after the introduction of a memory awareness project has led to an award win at Wolverhampton’s Dementia Action Alliance awards.

Memory Matters was awarded the Innovation in the Community Award for its community work in raising awareness of memory issues and signposting people with concerns to access the correct support for them.

Memory Matters was launched by the City of Wolverhampton Council in partnership with the Black Country Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, Wolverhampton Clinical Commissioning Group and the Alzheimer's Society.

The project enables people to interact with professionals who offer reassurance, advice and guidance to those who are concerned that they are becoming a bit forgetful, or are worried about a friend or relative.

Trust day service community nurses work in partnership with local authority social workers at each session, assessing whether someone's memory loss is anything more serious, such as the onset of dementia, and direct them towards appropriate help and support.

The collaborative working between health and social care has helped improve dementia diagnosis rates in the local community.

Wendy Goodall, Day Service Manager, received the award on behalf of the Trust, jointly with staff from Wolverhampton Carers Team.

Speaking about the win Wendy said, “Awards like this recognise and reward inspirational and innovative work that is making a real difference to patient care and experience.

“Winning the award is a welcomed recognition; a real boost to all those that are involved with the project and we are thrilled to receive the award.

“Memory Matters is a great concept that aims to benefit those in the community and we look forward to building on the work that is currently happening with local authority partners and continuing with its success.”

Memory Matters takes place at Wednesfield Community Hub, Well Lane, on the first Tuesday of the month from 10.00am - 3.00pm.

Celebrating Time to Talk Day around the Trust

time to talk day 18 coll pennAcross the Trust, staff and service users joined people all over the UK to mark Time to Talk Day on Thursday 1st December.  

At the Recovery College, a staff and student coffee morning was held. The team invited students and staff to meet others in a relaxed environment.  The event was well attended with great discussion around mental health. Students were also given the chance to find out more about the People’s Parliament after an informative discussion by Rosalind.  

Speaking on the event Kerry Wilkes, Recovery College Principal said: “The nature of our work means we discuss mental health every day, I wanted today to highlight that this can be done outside of the Recovery College and that even brief conversations with a variety of people can improve mood and mental health and reduce stigma.

“The tools provide by Time to Change were great for this, they enabled everyone to spread positivity and think about ways that they could keep the conversations going among their friends and family.”

In Wolverhampton, Penn Hospital Occupational Therapists helped to #endthestigma by holding an informative stall for staff and services users in Penn Reception. The stall gave passersby the chance to ask any questions they may have around mental health and write pledges suggesting ways they plane to help keep up the conversation around mental health.

Around 1 in 4 people experience a mental health problem, with many people afraid to speak about their own experience. Time to Talk Day was an opportunity to break the silence and misconceptions that are associated with mental health.

Mental Health Act Review – Have you say!

The Government has commissioned an independent review of the Mental Health Act. This is an important opportunity to influence how people are treated when they are at their most unwell.

The independent review has opened a survey to gather the views of people that have been detained, and/or have cared for someone that has been detained under the Mental Health Act.

This is an important opportunity to ensure that the voices of people with experience of the Act are heard, and influence the recommendations the Review makes about improving the law and related practices.

The survey is open until Wednesday 28 February. You can complete the survey online. If you'd prefer, you can also download and print the relevant survey and complete it by post.

Trust safeguarding team back Safer Internet Day

safe internet day 2The Trust's safeguarding team is backing a cyber awareness day to protect children and young people when they go online, as part of international Safer Internet day on Tuesday 6th February.

The theme of the day is ‘Create, Connect and Share Respect’ and offers an opportunity to focus on both the creative things that children and young people are doing online, as well as the role and responsibility that parents, carers and all other stakeholders have in helping to create a better, safer internet.

Caroline Kovacs-Atkinson, Named nurse for Safeguarding Children (Sandwell) will be visiting Sandwell CAMHS on the morning of Tuesday 6th February to provide information to patients, family members and carers around internet safety, online grooming (CSE), cyber bullying, gaming and social media. The drop-in session aims to promote safe and positive use of digital technology for children and young people.

Caroline said, “Teaching our children how to stay safe online is essential to their physical and emotional wellbeing. It is important that they know what to do to keep them safe in and outside the home.


 “Children and young people have an illusion of safety around them when they first start using the internet and social media as it happens within the apparent safety of their home environment, however this is not always the case.

“The day will give us an opportunity to engage with both adults and children, exploring what they know about internet and internet safety and helping them to expand on any knowledge they may already have ensuring that the message of reporting any concerns and communicating with each other is reinforced.”

Safer Internet Day is organised in the UK by the UK Safer Internet Centre to promote safe and responsible use of online technology and mobile phones for children and young people. From cyberbullying to social networking, each year Safer Internet Day aims to raise awareness of emerging online issues and chooses a topic reflecting current concerns.

Pre-school services achieve Stage 3 UNICEF Baby Friendly accreditation

UNICEF Baby FriendlyThe Health Visiting service at Black Country Partnership NHS Foundation Trust are celebrating after receiving Stage 3 Baby Friendly accreditation by UNICEF for the second time.

To achieve this recognition the teams have undergone a rigorous assessment process to provide assurance that they deliver the very highest standards of care.

The service were assessed against 4 criteria and scored over 80 per cent for each area. The UNICEF assessor commented how she was “impressed with the knowledge and commitment shown by Trust staff”.

Joy Williams, Interim General Manager said, “This is really good news for the Trust, and even better news for mothers and babies of Dudley. Our health visiting services are already committed to giving children the best possible start in life; achieving our stage three accreditation will help us ensure that all mothers and babies receive the very highest standards of care, not only by providing expert advice, but also by supporting all parents to build strong relationships with their babies.

“All our health visitors at the Trust attend a training programme which has been approved by UNICEF. This should enable all mothers and fathers to receive the very best information on which to make decisions about how to feed and care for their baby, and also ensure that they receive the support that they need to do this.”

Councillor Peter Miller, cabinet member for health and wellbeing said: “Dudley Council’s public health team have worked in partnership with BCPFT to maintain the Baby Friendly standards for continued accreditation, improving standards of care for mothers and babies.

“Maintaining UNICEF accreditation demonstrates the commitment Dudley organisations have to continually improve services for mothers and their newborns.

“Our aim is to improve on all aspects of early child care and the standards are firmly embedded within the council’s agenda, which will continue as BCPFT work towards the Unicef ‘Achieving Sustainability Standards’ in the future.”

New Chief Executive to take up post on 1st March

Richard Kirby is to take up the post of chief executive of Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust (BCHC) and Black Country Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (BCP) on 1st March, 2018.

Confirmation of the date follows the announcement in October that Richard, currently chief executive of Walsall Healthcare Trust, had been appointed to succeed Tracy Taylor as chief executive of the two trusts.

Under Richard’s leadership we will continue to focus on delivering high quality patient care, alongside playing a full role in helping develop new models of care across Birmingham and the Black Country, and also developing the business case for Transforming Care Together (TCT) (the integration programme bringing together BCHC, BCP and Dudley and Walsall Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust).

Tommy on Tour spreads word on dementia and leading change

tommy talks 1The Trust were delighted to welcome Tommy Whitelaw, a dementia campaigner, to speak to staff about his experience of care in the NHS gained whilst caring for his late mother, Joan.

Tommy, brought his 'You can make a difference' tour to The Metalforming Centre, hosting three sessions with Black Country Partnership, Birmingham Community Healthcare (BCHC) and Dudley and Walsall (DWMH) staff on Monday 4th December.

During his talks, he spoke about his experiences from a carer's viewpoint; the small changes that would make a significant difference to patients and those caring for them.

Among the many valuable messages Tommy shared with staff was the importance of asking 'What matters to you?' rather than 'What's the matter with you?'. He said it is the small acts of kindness that make all the difference to the care our NHS staff provide.

As part of his tour, Tommy is asking all staff to make a pledge; to consider what we can all do to make a difference. Staff are encouraged to make a pledge by visiting the staff intranet. You can read pledges that have been made by staff across Black Country Partnership, Birmingham Community Healthcare and Dudley and Walsall Partnership by visiting the Alliance Scotland website.

Tommy was also joined by Stacey McCann, Head of Nursing Strategy & Commissioning from the Chief Nursing Office, NHS England, who discussed the Leading Change, Adding Value framework and talked about the link between the framework and Tommy’s campaign.

Having completed his 649th, 650th and 651st tour talks with the Trust, Tommy said: “I visited today to share my experiences of caring for my beautiful mum, Joan, who lived with vascular dementia. I hope that my experience can help those caring for people every day – they do such a fantastic job.

“It has been great to meet staff from across the three organisations. We’ve discussed how we can change what good care looks like to what good care feels like and with the welcome I’ve had and the people I’ve been fortunate to meet, I am excited to see the pledges in action with plans to re-visit the Trust in 2018.”

Joyce Fletcher, Executive Director of Nursing, AHPs, Psychology and Quality said: “Having met Tommy some time ago - I felt compelled to invite him to come to our Trust to share his story about his late mother Joan with our staff. Tommy’s heartfelt passion for caring for his mother and his experiences of the health and care system was such an eye opening and moving experience.

“I believe everyone that attended the event was moved and went away with the key message of changing the narrative to ‘what matters to patients?’ and knowing that we can make a difference for improving the patients experiences and outcomes. Let's all pledge to make a difference every day.

“We are pleased that this event was a joint event with BCHC and DWMH and thank all those who could attend as well as who shared displays on good practice linked to the Leading Change Adding Value – Chief Nursing Office strategy and AHP’s Into Action framework.”

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