Mental Health and Wellbeing

Our approach to helping patients understand and manage their mental health and wellbeing.

IAPT news

Mental Health and Wellbeing

Our approach to helping patients understand and manage their mental health and wellbeing.

IAPT news

Our Approach

It is estimated that one in four people over 16, experience at least one diagnosable mental health problem in any given year. Depression and anxiety disorders are the most common affecting 16% of the population at any one time (NHS England).  25-30% of people reporting a long term musculoskeletal (MSK) problem also report depression or anxiety (England 2017).

Our research suggests that forward thinking commissioners are increasingly looking for improvement in outcomes by exploring more innovative, collaborative and comprehensive approaches in delivering IAPT (Improving Access to Psychological Therapies) and Mental Health Services, encompassing long term condition management.  Connect Health has successfully partnered with the NHS for over 30 years, largely because of our extensive clinical expertise and our strong focus on evidence and innovation-based service delivery and practice.  We have taken our expertise and applied it to develop an exciting and innovative mental health and well-being model for supporting individuals in the community.


Key Features of Our Health and Wellbeing Model

  • Innovative approaches to mental health prevention and promotion – building on our successful Flippin’ Pain model, we have developed a creative and engaging approach to meet the specific requirements of a mental health and wellbeing service.
  • An Exemplary Community Engagement Toolkit – which meets the diverse needs and challenges of a broad range of demographics and focuses on reaching seldom heard groups within our communities.
  • Innovative use of digital technology to realise benefits and efficiencies in
    • patient management systems;
    • streamlining repetitive tasks and back-end operational processes;
    • triaging referrals;
    • patient self-referrals with access to self-help materials and evidenced based digital and blended therapies;
    • using data to best effect in improving service design and delivery, as well as contributing to a wider population health management.
  • Integration of Connect Health’s own services, as well as a strategy to integrate more broadly within NHS services locally to bridge the gap between mental and physical health and wellbeing.
  • A proactive partnership/collaborative approach – with a focus on service integration, development, shared learning and population wide health improvement outcomes.
  • A strong commitment to colleague satisfaction and staff wellbeing – acknowledging that a committed and happy workforce delivers.
  • Organisational scale to embed operational efficiency and productivity.

Our Multi-Disciplinary Team

At Connect Health, we strongly believe that having a highly skilled multidisciplinary team approach enables us to collaborate more successfully to deliver the best possible service to meet our patient’s needs.

The complex and multidimensional needs of our patients are better met because of our ability to provide assessments and treatment that are tailored and delivered by our highly skilled team.

For example, our leadership team in Lincolnshire consists of senior physiotherapists, psychologists, nurses, pain management specialists and operational managers; each person bringing their individual expertise and each bringing equal value.

Focus on Sonia Ovens

I am qualified as a cognitive behavioural psychotherapist, so deliver CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) and ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy). I am also familiar with Compassion Focused Therapy and have completed the training as an EMDR practitioner (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing). My role includes one-to-one assessment and treatments, as well as delivering the psychological interventions on our pain management programmes in accordance with patient’s clinical presentation and goals along with NICE guidelines.

Read more from Sonia here.

Focus on Dr Lizzie Doherr

Lizzie, Clinical Lead for Pain Psychology at our Lincolnshire Pain Management Service, describes the advantages of moving out of her comfort zone to Connect Health after 20 years in one organisation.

“I love to see the changes we help people to make to their lives, and the benefits in terms of how they feel. But it’s the teamwork, the feeling that I’m appreciated and that the work I do is valued. Connect Health has a compassionate environment. There are demands of the service which need to be met, but at its heart we have a team that respect and care about each other. There’s something quite special about what we have.”

Read more from Lizzie here.

Working together with Hertfordshire

Hertfordshire Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) Counselling Service Framework

Connect Health is delighted to be part of the Hertfordshire Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) Counselling Service Framework. Working in partnership with other IAPT providers, Connect Health delivers free IAPT compliant counselling for adults and young people aged sixteen and over living in Hertfordshire with common mental health problems.

From early May 2021 our team of specially trained counsellors will be offering timely appointments for counselling. Referrals and appointments can be arranged though GPs and Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust (HPFT) IAPT Service.

Further information including contact details and how to make a referral

Further Reading

Flippin Pain™

Flippin’ Pain is a public health campaign, championed by Connect Health, supported by NHS Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Groups with an online resource launched to help the 50% of Britons who suffer with pain.

Things to check out:

  • Watch the videos and read the people stories
  • Check out the myth busters
  • Explore the Useful Resources
  • Learn about the campaign and those behind it
  • Join the mailing list to keep informed of events, webinars and the Peloton and contribute your stories

Flippin’ Pain


IAPT Board Assurance Prompt

Amid rising pressure on the UK’s mental health services, compounded by COVID-19, the Good Governance Institute (GGI) and Connect Health have unveiled an industry-leading briefing to support NHS leaders and commissioners in providing the most efficient and best quality care in the community.

The six IAPT principles covered in the BAP are:

  • Ease of access – including the use of self-referrals;
  • Least intrusive intervention first – in line with NICE-recommended psychological therapies and a stepped-care model;
  • Trained and competent clinicians – who have regular clinical supervision that is outcome-focused and supportive;
  • Meaningful treatment choices;
  • Routine, outcome monitoring – session by session; and,
  • Building and maintaining close links with primary care, specialist mental health services, third sector, social care and employment support services

Read more about the BAP here


Time to Change

A growing social movement working to change the way we all think and act about mental health problems.

Time to Change


NHS England

Adult Improving Access to Psychological Therapies programme

NHS England


For further information please contact

What our patients say about us

We hear from Diana who suffers from chronic pain and has attended the Connect Health Pain Management Programme in Wolverhampton.

Monica had a hip replacement 3 months ago and within 6 weeks, returned her walking sticks.

“I really enjoy coming to the gym. I can really feel the difference. The physios keep me straight and give me the confidence to go on.” Monica, Merton

We speak with Sharon around her experience being part of the Pain Management Programme currently supporting those living with persistent pain across Wolverhampton.

Karen explains how the Pain Management Programme has equipped her with the necessary learning to manage the pain and continue living her best life.

Get in Touch

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