Project Update #18: 6 June 2016

Dear colleagues,

In this week’s video blog we welcome Elaine Kirwan, the Associate Director of Nursing who talks about her role for Forward Thinking Birmingham and how the service is committed to working with young people and families to address individuals’ needs.  


“My role encompasses two main areas, the first is the patient and their experience of our services, and the second is management of the teams who deliver our services and shape our patient experience. 

I look after our nursing teams and a number of professionals in the service, ensuring they are well supported and have the knowledge to deliver the high quality care our children, young people and young adults deserve.

I’m proud to have worked within mental health services for over 30 years, and my experience spans specialisms in eating disorders and supporting the treatment of patients who self-harm and present suicidal behaviours.

When we started to develop the Forward Thinking Birmingham model, we focused on early help and intervention. We listened to the experiences of children, young people, young adults and their families about some of the difficulties they faced accessing the right support at the right time.
As well as our focus on joined-up care we provide additional ways of offering support, advice and promoting emotional well-being in the local community.  

These include:

  • Pause, a new city centre drop-in service, located at 21 Digbeth (near the Bullring). Open seven days a week (times?). Pause provides support in a friendly environment where young people can explore their emotions
  • Our Access Centre offers a single point of contact for advice and guidance, to discuss referrals, explore treatment options and access support in a mental health crisis. Open seven days a week (times), the Access Centre accepts self-referrals and referrals from parents or carers, in addition to those from statutory bodies and GPs. The team also provides access to 24/7 crisis support

We also work closely with GPs to ensure that patients get support at the earliest possible stage, with the aim of avoiding the need for crisis support.
We’re extremely passionate about our notion of there being ‘no wrong door’ to access support and excited about the start of our journey as we continue to develop a revolutionary approach to mental health services in Birmingham.”

If you have any questions please contact , I'd be delighted to hear from you.