There are a number of benefits to the Trust using a preferred provider for language services – people know who to contact and the consistency and ease of a procedure to follow is important.Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust
Avon & Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Foundation Trust wanted to improve its communication with the community, regardless of the language involved. Prestige Network needed to provide the Trust with the language resources required to communicate with non-English speaking clients so that they have the same access to mental health services as English speakers.
The nature of language requirements from the Avon & Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust was huge and varied – the Trust is a widespread organisation geographically with six Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCG) within the Avon & Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership – up to 200 locations and the range of languages it needs is substantial. Some of the languages requested by the Trust were: Somali, Kurdish, Cantonese, Tigrinya and Polish, but a total of 20 languages were requested.
Sometimes mental illness can affect an individual’s ability to communicate in English, which they may well have been able to do previously. We spend time and effort selecting each linguist for a mental health assignment – it is as much about their life experience as their skill as a linguist. They need to understand the situation the individual with mental illness finds himself or herself in, as well as what they are actually saying. Impartial delivery is essential.
“We never know when we are going to have a crisis which requires a linguist, but we are reassured by Prestige Network’s 24-hour service. Somebody is always available, and that is particularly important in mental health. The fact that Prestige Network can get hold of linguists in some of the more unusual languages gives us added confidence in the delivery of the company’s services.”
Prestige Network was pleased to become the preferred provider for the Avon & Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust when it adopted a concept of Trust-wide provision of language services. We have worked with most business units within the Trust and requests for our services have showed a steady increase.