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Issue 104  |  13 October 2022

'Whole School Approach' to mental health

More than 100 stakeholders from mental health support teams (MHSTs), from across the east and south east of England, came together on 21 September to discuss their approaches to delivering the Whole School Approach within mental health support in schools and how this impact can be measured.
Led by Kent Surrey and Sussex Academic Health Science Network and NIHR Applied Research Collaboration Kent, Surrey and Sussex (ARC KSS), in collaboration with the Department for Education (DfE), the Whole School Approach Best Practice Review of Mental Health Support Teams (MHSTs) - Next Steps & Measuring Success event was an opportunity for mental health support staff to discuss their team’s approach.
The event followed the review and evaluation carried out by the School of Psychology at the University of Sussex in participation with the Charlie Waller Trust, last year, on the Best Practice Review and Evaluation of Whole School Approach (WSA) within MHSTs that looked at how mental health support teams are supporting schools across the east and south east of England.

You can watch a video of the event here.
Health and social care
Living with ADHD and the importance of early diagnosis

Films documenting living with ADHD 

A series of four videos has been created, which document the experience of living with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and the importance of a confirmed diagnosis as told by young people, parents and healthcare professionals in Medway.

AHSNs are working with mental health trusts and community paediatric services to improve the assessment process for ADHD using computer-based tests (measuring attention, impulsivity and activity).
AHSNs, including KSS AHSN, are supporting its wider spread during 2020-2022 as part of an AHSN Network national programme. We are supporting an ADHD intervention which uses technology created by health technology company Qbtech Ltd. The technology, QbTest, measures a patient’s attention, impulsivity and motor activity all at the same time. These indicators are core symptoms of ADHD and accurate measurement adds objectivity to support timely diagnosis.
The intervention has shown a reduction in time to diagnosis by 153 days (median). Using this intervention increases staff capacity by reducing the number of appointments needed for diagnosis and by ruling out ADHD sooner for ambiguous cases. Releasing capacity of clinicians can help reduce waiting lists and allow clinicians more time to concentrate on complex cases.


Interactive bite-sized workshops     

20 Oct, 16 Nov, 12 Jan   10.30 - 12:00  Online

The KSS AHSN team has launched a series of interactive bite-sized workshops, hosted by industry experts, to support start-ups, clinical entrepreneurs, and SMEs to manage and grow their business. 

Environmental Sustainability in health and social care
20 October, Surrey Heartlands HTA
In partnership with SETsquared, this event aims to educate innovators on the growing importance of the climate crisis, and what they need to know over the coming years. It will look at how climate change is impacting the NHS, and how the NHS is impacting our climate, and breakdown the NHS’s approach to sustainability and sustainable procurement over the next decade. Book here.

Preparing a winning funding bid
16 November, 10.30am-12noon, online
A workshop is designed to help innovators choose which funders best match their needs,
put together exactly the information that funders are looking for and write a bid that stands a good chance of being successful. Featuring guest speaker is Gary Ward, a professional bid writer and trainer, with wide experience of writing winning bids in this field. Book here.

Intellectual Property Workshop
12 January 2023, 10.30am-12noon, online 
A bitesize online workshop full of expert advice and guidance on intellectual property. Hosted by KSS AHSN, and delivered by intellectual property attorneys from Maucher Jenkins, this workshop will help you ensure that you have the right protection in place for your needs. Keeping your product distinctive is important – protecting that is vital! Book here.

AHSN Network Funding Newsletter

Read the latest news on funding opportunities and advice for innovators in this regular funding newsletter from the AHSN Network.

Read the latest issue here.

Children's mental health and neurodiversity is top of research agenda in Kent, Surrey and Sussex

In September, the Applied Research Collaboration Kent, Surrey and Sussex (ARC KSS) held an in-person, community of research practice event on Children and Young People's Mental Health, Neurodevelopment, Neurodiversity and Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND), at the University of Sussex.
Chaired by Becca Randell, Implementation Manager for the Starting Well, ARC KSS, and Dr Ian Male, Director of Research at Sussex Community Foundation Trust, the event brought together more than 40 delegates to learn about research projects in the region, share best practice and identify research gaps.
ARC KSS Research Fellow, Devyn Glass, presented a project which was conducted with Autism Community Research Network Sussex (ACoRNS) at the University of Sussex in collaboration with University of Southampton, where digital stories were produced by autistic young people to show how they felt at secondary school using the 'Just Right' approach.
David Keaveney-Sheath, Strategic Senior Case Manager for NHS England, gave an overview of the Learning Disabilities & Autism Programme in the South-East. David outlined the ‘case for change’ for neurodiverse children and young people, their families and supporters. 
The afternoon provided an opportunity for delegates to hear all about a range of different research projects in the region and invited them to help identify any research gaps in a range of areas including: autism; attention deficit hyperactivity disorder; learning disabilities; looked after children; safeguarding and social issues; special educational needs and disability, neuro-disability.

Read the full round-up here.

Global conference focusing on young people’s mental health 

In September, Becca Randell attended the International Association for Youth Mental Health (IAYMH) annual conference in Copenhagen. Becca is Children and Young People Mental Health Implementation Manager for Kent Surrey Sussex Academic Health Science Network (KSS AHSN), and Implementation Manager at the Applied Research Collaboration Kent, Surrey and Sussex (ARC KSS).
With her were two colleagues, Claire Vella, Applied Research Collaboration KSS (ARC KSS) PHD Student and Dr Leanne Bogen-Johnston, ARC KSS Starting Well Post Doc. Also representing the local area was Dr Rick Fraser, Consultant Psychiatrist and Clinical Lead Youth Pathway for Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.
The theme of the conference was ‘Reimagining Youth Mental Health’, and across three days, the group attended presentations, browsed table-top displays, and explored various topics in workshops, as well as networking and meeting with colleagues from across the world in between sessions. Over 700 people attended, from 49 nations, of whom at least a third were young people. These were involved in planning and co-facilitating the conference, as well as taking an active part in the proceedings.
In addition, Becca herself was invited to a fourth day of sessions focussed on international research into youth mental health. Becca was able to share some of the youth mental health research and work to support the 16-25 pathway redesign agenda in Kent, Surrey and Sussex.
Following the conference, Becca and her colleagues are planning to share their learning via the Starting Well network, and the Sussex and Kent 16-25 Integrated Care Board Pathways.
Read more here.

Surrey Heartlands Community of Practice    

18 October  12.00 - 14:00  Online

Are you a Surrey Heartlands GP, pharmacist, geriatrician, nurse, AHP with an interest in tackling polypharmacy? Do you worry about seeing patients who receive large numbers of medicines?

Then join the Community of Practice to meet like-minded people and share learning and expertise. Register via the Eventbrite link here.

Polypharmacy: Getting the Balance Right
Understanding the data webinar     

15 November  12.00 - 13:30  Online

To consider how best to understand and utilise available medicines data, the AHSN Network and NHS Business Services Authority (BSA) are hosting a webinar on 15 November for ICS medicines optimisation leads and Primary Care Network (PCN) teams, including GPs and pharmacists.

As part of the new national polypharmacy programme, the webinar will demonstrate how polypharmacy prescribing comparators help us understand variation in prescribing of multiple medicines and identify patients more likely to be exposed to the risk of taking multiple, or combinations of, medicines.

Find out more and reserve your space

We hope you enjoyed Collaborate. If you have a story you’d like to share, please get in touch.

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