Tom Bristow of the EDP reports:
But in a move which has done nothing for staff morale the trust suggested employing workers in low wage countries to talk to mental health patients over Skype, in its application to secure government funding to research the project.
The NSFT’s full application for government money to explore becoming a mutual has now been released after a Freedom of Information request from campaigners.
The application shows a radical series of proposals which the NSFT denied yesterday it was exploring.
Unison steward Emma Corlett said: “The staff we have spoken to are very clear – what we need are resources to do our jobs properly.”
There was an all day secret NSFT Board meeting which considered and supported the submission of this application.
We only found out about this by submitting a Freedom of Information request. Mutuals aren’t covered by the Freedom of Information Act because they are not part of the public sector: they are private.
The proposal was written by Adrian Stott, the former investment banker and Board Director of NSFT who is leading the ‘mutualisation’ project.
The proposal was never shared with the Board of Governors, service users, carers or staff.
Either the NSFT Board agreed with the proposal it spent a day considering and voted for or it was asleep on the job.
What a waste of time which could have be spent on NFST’s problems.
What a waste of £100,000. Why are City of London investment bankers and lawyers redesigning mental health services in Norfolk and Suffolk? Where is the clinical input? Or is this just about what bankers and lawyers love best: money?
What will the Department of Health and the Cabinet Office think when they discover NSFT’s application was ‘highly speculative’? Did it only become highly speculative after the press found out about it?
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