Access to new mental health support network | News

Access to new mental health support network

Female sat on a sofa with a laptop. On the screen is the Togetherall website.

The NHS in Cornwall has launched a new digital partnership which will see people aged 16 and above given free access to an online peer-to-peer mental health support community.

Anyone can now create an anonymous account with Togetherall, using just an email address and postcode. This will allow them to connect with and support others in a safe online space 24-hours a day, 365 days a year.

Togetherall is a leading online mental health service that provides thousands of people with around-the-clock, peer-to-peer support that is moderated by licensed and registered mental health practitioners.

“It’s part of a wider strategy to transform how mental health services are delivered across the county in the coming years. This latest offer is simply an extra resource on top of the other forms of help and support that are provided by the NHS and our excellent voluntary and community sector,” said Dr Jeremy Sandbrook, a Consultant Psychiatrist with Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.

Local mental health services continue to see high demand from the community, with the cost-of-living crisis and pandemic adding to the stresses being felt by many. Cornwall’s dedicated 24/7 phone-line, for those in a mental health crisis, received 3 times the number of calls this Christmas compared to last. Nationally, demand for crisis mental health services has also increased by one third since before the pandemic and doubled since 2017.

Dr Sandbrook, who is the medical lead for Cornwall’s Community Mental Health Transformation programme, added: “Use of digital or remote care rapidly expanded during the pandemic. It’s not something that will replace face-to-face support and nor should it, but digital solutions do play an important role in helping to increase access and choice,”

“Also, we know how important it is to address the isolation some people find themselves in. The more people feel connected with others who can understand and empathise with what they are going through, the likelihood of them deteriorating and needing more complex, specialist interventions is reduced. The power of people helping each other by sharing their thoughts, feelings, stories, and encouragement should never be underestimated.”

Togetherall is clinically proven to help those who are struggling with stress, isolation, anxiety, depression, and other common mental health issues.

One Togetherall user describes how they’ve benefited from the site: “I started using it at a time of crisis. I was finding it difficult to manage my distress. Using the site has helped me reduce anxiety, stress and feelings of isolation, enabled me to feel connected to others who have emotional issues, and given me an opportunity to be part of a helping community.”

People can register for Togetherall anonymously using their postcode, email address and date of birth.

Alternatively, anyone in a mental health crisis can call our Mental Health Connect line on 0800 038 5300.

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