Avril, our Wellbeing Lead, discusses all things Telehealth…
What is Telehealth?
The Cellar Trust has partnered with MyWellbeing College (part of Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust) to increase access to psychological services for people living in Bradford, Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven. We can support people with mental health issues such as depression, anxiety and panic by using self-help workbooks over a 12 week period. Clients have a fortnightly session with a Wellbeing Coach over the phone. The workbooks offer practical solutions to some of the problems clients’ face using cognitive behavioral techniques and they learn how to manage their symptoms better.
To access the service you enroll with MyWellbeing College and will go through an assessment which ensures you receive the most appropriate help for you. One of the options on offer is Telehealth. Telehealth offers telephone support out of hours which will make the service more accessible to more people, particularly if they live in a remote area, are unable to travel or work full-time.
Some of our coaches can also speak Punjabi and Urdu if clients would prefer to talk in their own language.
Why are you so passionate about this new service?
There are so many reasons but primarily because I have complete faith that it works.
I have used most of the techniques and exercises in the workbooks myself over the years and still draw on them today. Unfortunately this kind of support wasn’t available when I was struggling with my own mental health and it took me a long time to discover and learn what is now collated into the workbooks.
I know some people are skeptical about phone therapy but I have worked on Telephone Support Lines for years and believe they are just as effective as face to face support. In some respects they can be more successful as the therapist needs extra skills in order to build a relationship with the client which is key to recovery.
The other wonderful thing about the service is that the client does the work with support of a coach. This means the clients are self-reliant and this is very empowering. The skills they learn will equip them for life.
Why is peer support key and how will it work as part of Telehealth?
The Wellbeing Coaches at The Cellar Trust come from a range of backgrounds but we all have our own lived experiences of mental health. This means we either have struggled with their own mental wellbeing in the past or have cared for loved ones going through mental health issues, so can therefore relate to what clients are going through and can often draw on our own experiences to help people. Because we know what it is like, we offer non-judgmental support and can offer the guidance and encouragement needed to get better.
To access the service, you can register online at www.bmywellbeingcollege.nhs.uk or give the enrolment team a call on 0300 555 5551