Speaking in the light of increased concern about the spread of Covid-19, Suffolk User Forum has urged families and individuals to use only credible sources of information, to access appropriate healthcare services, and to keep feeding back to them on experiences within Suffolk’s healthcare provision.
The organisation, which seeks to raise the voice of mental health service users in the region, has reiterated that it very much continues to operate and is able to maintain its daily commitment to those in need.
Suffolk User Forum is run by staff highly experienced in mental health issues and in the county’s healthcare offering, so it is able to provide robust support and signposting on a wide spectrum of issues from the more minor, to the most extreme.
Jayne Stevens, Chief Executive of Suffolk User Forum, is very aware that the nature of the virus and the daily media speculation, means many people will potentially be feeling more vulnerable and may suffer with worsening mental health issues.
She said: “We are certainly seeing an increase in the number of people contacting us, and we know from our interaction with mental health services regionally and nationally that the virus is leading to a lot more anxiety and concern.
“I want to reassure people in the county that we are reviewing our arrangements daily, staying up to date with the suggestions from the government, and that we have every intention of continuing to provide our support across Suffolk.
“While our team are now working in a home-based capacity, are phone lines are still managed, and we are receiving emails and responding as swiftly as we can to any enquiries.”
The charity wants to use this unprecedented period to consider what further services and solutions might be appreciated by users.
Miss Stevens added: “Now is the time to start getting in touch with us and ensuring your voice is heard so that we can always shape and refine our service for the people of Suffolk.
“We want to know if people would benefit from an online wellbeing group, if they want to share news about a good initiative happening in their local area, or they want to commend a service they’ve received in our county.
“These inputs are invaluable as we put together a picture of what is happening.
“I cannot stress enough that we are here for the people of Suffolk and do not want to see anyone’s mental health deteriorate – particularly in these uncertain times.”
Suffolk User Forum is operating 09.30 to 15.30, Monday to Thursday and welcomes all communication about suggestions, recommendations and acknowledgments.
You can email Suffolk User Forum on firstname.lastname@example.org.