Assertive Outreach Team and Safe Haven Provision for South Tyneside

Posted by: Press team on 17 January 2020 10:52

People with a learning disability in South Tyneside and their families and care providers will have, from next week, access to a team of learning disability nurses (Assertive Outreach Team) and a safe space where they can receive specialist support if they find themselves in crisis.

This model is the first to open in the Tyne and Wear area and shows South Tyneside Learning Disabilities Alliance the commitment to people with learning disabilities. The Assertive Outreach Team consists of staff with additional training who are able to support people managing in a crisis.  The two safe haven apartments, at Monkton Hall in Jarrow,  consist of two bedrooms with en-suite facilities as well as a kitchen, a living area and an activities room. While access to the Assertive Outreach Team and safe haven is time limited, and is not intended as long term, it enables a person with learning disabilities to be supported through the crisis period and be supported to get the right support.

Councillor Tracey Dixon, Deputy Leader with responsibility for Independence and Wellbeing, said: "This facility will allow people with a learning disability to access immediate and professional support in a calm and relaxing environment.

"Our outreach team will work intensively with people using this service, helping both people in crisis and those looking to move on to independent living in the community by developing the skills and confidence they need.''

The development of the safe havens is aimed at providing better community services for people with learning disabilities and their families, thereby reducing the dependency on hospitals to support those in crisis.

Dr James Gordon, Clinical Director for Mental Health and Learning Disabilities at NHS South Tyneside Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said: "The opening of the safe haven represents a major milestone in the transformation of services for people with a learning disability in South Tyneside. For too long we have had limited community support which means when things go wrong people can end up being admitted to hospital inappropriately.

"Our enhanced community team of experienced and highly skilled nurses, psychologists and therapists can intervene earlier and our safe haven is a supportive and therapeutic environment for people who need time away from home to get better. These developments will help people with a learning disability to live fulfilling lives as valued members of our community."

Last modified: 01 April 2022 10:54