SOUTHERN Health NHS Foundation Trust, which owns Alton Community Hospital, has issued an open invitation to its annual members’ meeting at its headquarters in Tatchbury Mount in Southampton.

The meeting, on on Tuesday, September 12, provides an opportunity to hear from key speakers on two important issues that relate to services provided by the trust and how it helps patients, their carers and families with specialist care and support in thes areas of frailty and mental health.

Dr Jane Williams will be discussing why frailty is a key focus for the Trust. Many older people need extra support to be able to live their lives in their own homes as they become less able. Dr Williams will discuss how the trust’s work to support frail older people fits alongside other services and health concerns, where the hot spot areas are for patients across Hampshire, and how it has an impact on the wider health economy.

Dr Hazel Nicholls will speak on the talking therapies service italk. She will cover topics including how italk is working with colleagues in perinatal mental health to improve how mothers and their families are supported in the community. And, with musculoskeletal problems such as back pain being the biggest cause of time off work outside of stress, how the service is working to provide additional support for people to get them back to work.

The meeting also provides the opportunity to hear about the trust’s activities over the last year across all it services, which include community healthcare, mental health, learning disability and specialist services.

The trust’s annual report and accounts will also be formally presented by members of its board, and attendees will be able to hear about the improvements and developments that are planned for the year ahead.

Lynne Hunt, chairman of Southern Health, said: “Southern Health has been on a significant journey over the last few years, and in the short time I have been working with the trust I have been deeply impressed by everyone’s commitment to improvement.

“I think it’s important that we are able to share and discuss details of our challenges and successes with local people, as well as our plans for the future. I hope to meet many new people at the annual members’ meeting, and I look forward to it being a very interesting evening.”

A number of information stands will showcase services such as learning disabilities, early intervention in psychosis, Crisis Lounge (a collaboration between mental health clinicians and emergency departments), diabetes, Quit4Life (smoking cessation), and recruitment.

* The meeting is at the Development and Training Centre, Tatchbury Mount, Calmore, from 5.30pm-8.30pm.