The Crisis Care Concordat has it’s National Summit in London next week – a gathering of all the signatory agencies in order to mark progress ahead of the first big deadline. For those who follow me on Twitter, you’ll notice that I keep uploading a developing map of England, shaded in various colours, like this (as of November 19th 2014) —
This is what the colours mean -
- Red - no progress yet recorded. Doesn’t mean nothing’s happening or that discussions aren’t occuring. Just that they haven’t yet delivered the first outcome.
- Yellow - the first outcome: this means that individual areas have agreed in principle to work together to deliver what the Concordat aims to do and that they are going into 2015 with the intention of delivering an area-specific action plan to work out what in particular needs doing locally.
- Green - the second outcome: this means that areas have completed and jointly agreed their action plan with that commitment to deliver upon it.
The keen-eyed amongst you will obviously recognise that nothing needs to actually happen in the real world for an area to ‘go green’. Your local services could, in theory, be completely and entirely unchanged and unaffected, despite going ‘green’. For this reason, I want to put an argument for in introduction of another colour … or two! Do we also need something that says “We’ve delivered our Action Plan”? … perhaps one colour for ‘delivered in part’ and another for ‘delivered in full’?!
This suggestion hits at the heart of certain frustrations that many have – and I’m not just referring to police officers here. When are we going to stop talking about this and DO something? Action plans are great – it doesn’t actually mean a damned thing has changed or been done, quite frankly! Actually, whilst some areas are meeting to discuss their commitment and / or their action plans, some of them are also busy closing place of safety services and reducing hospital beds which will increase the pressure at the bottleneck of crisis care. There are AMHPs, mental health nurses and doctors working in frontline mental health services who are just as weary anyone else having worked their whole 35 or 40 year careers with the same frustrations about the crisis care interface. Difficulties in arranging the detention, conveyance and safety of vulnerable people have been ongoing for decades.
So whilst the Concordat is bringing people together and we are seeing chat, declaration and plans it’s vital that local leadership turns this into an operational reality on the ground because patients and victims live there, not in meeting rooms where concordats are discussed and plans are conceived. And a final plea from me in this short post: something I’ve concluded all over again now that I’m back in the thick of this – Concordats need to have a detail for proper, applied legal education for all of the health, police and social care professionals who will be involved – and NOT just frontline staff. No point managers conceiving how services will be built and run, unless those services are predicated on the legal frameworks that govern us all. I still read and hear legal nonsense, most days as my last post highlighted.
- Download the Concordat document itself.
- About the Crisis Care Concordat
- Load the latest version of the CCC map to check your area’s progress.
The Mental Health Cop blog
– won the ConnectedCOPS ‘Top Cop’ Award for leveraging social media in policing.
– won the Digital Media Award from the UK’s leading mental health charity, Mind
– won a World of Mentalists #TWIMAward for the best in mental health blogs
– was highlighted by the Independent Commission on Policing & Mental Health
– was referenced in the UK Parliamentary debate on Policing & Mental Health
– was commended by the Home Affairs Select Committee of the UK Parliament.