Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust (LPT) has launched a dedicated phone line* 0116 295 3060* where people of all ages in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland can access NHS mental health support when they need it urgently.

The new mental health central access point ‘phone service links callers with call handlers and clinicians who can assess their needs and advise, support, signpost or refer them directly to the appropriate service.

LPT, which provides mental health, learning disabilities and community health services across Leicestershire and Rutland, has launched the service as a timely intervention at the height of the COVID-19 outbreak.

The 0116 295 3060 service* offers people with urgent mental health needs a local alternative to NHS 111, the emergency department and other urgent and non-urgent services.

As well providing assessments and early interventions where needed, the service aims to help reduce the pressure on other services, particularly emergency services, allowing them to focus resources on the COVID-19 response.

Dr Fabida Aria, associate medical director for LPT’s mental health services, explained: “We have brought together a team of experienced mental health practitioners able to offer direct access to assessment, support and where needed, referrals to NHS services.

“This is particularly important during this difficult time when we can offer an alternative to NHS 111, the emergency department and other urgent and non-urgent services. As well as helping to provide assessments and early interventions where needed, we aim to help reduce the pressure on other services.”

LPT’s new mental health access line is for of all ages across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland – including existing and previous service users and people who have never used our services, as well as to carers, stakeholders and health and social care professionals looking for information advice.

Calls are answered by call handlers and triaged by a nurse who will decide on the urgency and the need.  If an individual requires an assessment, they will be referred to the appropriate service, such as a community mental health team or LPT’s crisis and home treatment team.  The team is also supported by a consultant psychiatrist.

The central access point service was developed in response to feedback from service users, NHS staff and partner organisations county-wide as part of an ambitious programme of all-age mental health service improvements by the Trust.

The roll-out of the service has been brought forward in line with a drive by NHS England and Improvement to ensure telephone access to NHS support, advice and triage is available to anyone with an urgent need.

GPs¸ social care providers and other agencies referring in to LPT services will continue to refer patients through  existing referral pathways.

  • The central access point phone service* is not an emergency service. Where people have immediate, serious and life-threatening emergency mental and/or physical health needs, for example if an individual has taken an overdose or is in imminent danger of physical harm, they should attend A & E or call 999 for the appropriate emergency service.

*Local call rate. Please refer to phone provider for details of charges

Information about national, local and online non-urgent mental health support is available on the LPT website https://www.leicspart.nhs.uk/latest/covid-19-support-for-your-emotional-wellbeing/