The first group of peer-support workers at a NHS trust have begun their duties in Norfolk to help patients recovering from mental-health problems.

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Eleven new staff at Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust completed training at Hellesdon Hospital in June and a further seven, based at the West Suffolk Hospital, in Bury St Edmunds, are set to finish in mid-July.

Peer-support workers are employed specifically as a result of their personal experience of mental health issues and aim to help patients achieve personal recovery goals and aspirations.

Justine Brown, peer-support worker coordinator, said: “We had over 80 applicants to become the first peer support workers.

“As well as lived experience of mental-health issues, applicants needed to demonstrate an understanding of their own mental health condition and an understanding of recovery. They also needed a desire to give something back and a compassionate attitude.”

To find out more, email justine.brown@nsft.nhs.uk

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