Sussex Staff in Mind is a virtual wellbeing hub that is accessible to all health and local authority social care staff in the Sussex area (and NHS staff in Hampshire CAMHS). You can access the hub if you are experiencing emotional or psychological difficulties. You do not have to inform your manager or GP when contacting the hub and it is a confidential service. The hub offers a space for you to talk about what is going on and to think through possible options if needed (including support to access further mental health services if required). You can book an appointment through the Sussex Staff in Mind website. The first part of the process involves completing a self-assessment about how you are feeling and then there is the option of booking a confidential follow up appointment with a member of the team.
Sussex Staff in Mind has recently commissioned a number of 8-week mindfulness courses that can be accessed by staff who use their service.
What exactly is mindfulness and how can it help?
Mindfulness is about being present with our experience with an attitude of kindness and curiosity. This enables us to relate to our experience, rather than run from it, and that gives us some freedom not to be blown around by strong emotions or sensations, or by compelling thoughts. In that space that we then create, we can see more clearly what we are experiencing and we can decide how to respond in ways that are most beneficial for ourselves and those around us.
There is a lot of data to suggest there are high levels of healthcare and social care staff reporting stress and feeling unwell. There is evidence to suggest that healthcare staff attending mindfulness courses are significantly less stressed at the end of the course. In addition, the effects on stress are maintained at follow-up time periods. It is hoped that a number of staff members can benefit from these courses and that it may help reduce stress levels. Anyone who works in the Integrated Care Systems in Sussex can apply for a place on one of these courses. They will be available on a first come first served basis. It is possible to self-refer without having to be seen by Sussex Staff in Mind service first.
What are mindfulness courses?
Mindfulness is about being present with our experience with an attitude of kindness and curiosity. The sessions focus mainly on teaching skills that develop awareness of body sensations, feelings and thoughts, which allow you to pause and step back from a situation before you react. You will begin tolearn to live in the present and avoid ruminating on the past or worrying about the future. In each session there will be a mixture of ‘skills practice’, ‘conversation’ about this practice and exercises from cognitive therapy. This is not a therapy group so you will not be expected to share details of your personal life. However, you will be in a group of up to 15 colleagues, some of whom you may know. At the heart of each group will be a guided mindfulness practice and an opportunity to talk about it. Everything is ‘invitational’ and you will not be required to speak in the group if you would prefer not to.
Sussex Health and Care Partnership has commissioned 8-week mindfulness courses for the following organisations:
- Brighton & Hove CCG
- Brighton & Hove City Council
- University Hospitals Sussex (East)
- East Sussex County Council
- East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust
- NHS East Sussex CCG, which has now combined:
- Eastbourne, Hailsham and Seaford CCG
- Hastings and Rother CCG
- High Weald Lewes Havens CCG
- NHS West Sussex CCG, which has now combined:
- Coastal West Sussex CCG
- Crawley CCG
- Horsham and Mid Sussex CCG
- Queen Victoria Hospital
- South East Coast Ambulance NHS Foundation Trust
- Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust
- West Sussex County Council
- University Hospitals Sussex (West)
Sussex Staff in Mind also covers the GPs and their practice staff in Sussex.
Application form for Staff in Mind (choice of groups are listed at the end of the form)
Please return your completed application form to firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are employed by Sussex Partnership, please apply for the courses for SPFT staff at: