I trust that you were able to enjoy some rest over the Easter holiday as the battle against COVID-19 enters its critical period. This is the latest of my updates and I hope that you find them useful as we face into uncertain times as new and unique challenges emerge for our profession.
COVID-19: the safe and legal use of restraint and seclusion
On 15 April, the Department of Health (DoH) published its own guidance on the Safe and Legal Use of Restraint and Seclusion in Mental Health and Learning Disability Services during the Coronavirus Period. The guidance contains key messages in relation to restraint and seclusion in mental health and learning disability services during the ongoing emergency. It should be noted that restraint and seclusion in settings other than mental health and learning disability services are not covered within this guidance.
This document may be updated in line with the changing situation. Members should bear in mind that this guidance has been produced by the DoH and queries should be directed to Tomas Adell who is the mental health lead within the Department. Read the Guidance
PHA & HSCB - supporting you to support others during COVID-19
I wish to draw your attention to new interim guidelines and an E-Learning module which have been published by HSCNI, in collaboration with the Red Cross, the Red Crescent and NHS Education Scotland. Read the letter here.
COVID-19 - A-Z list of terms
The College is developing an A-Z list of key terms which members might find helpful in accessing the vast amount of Covid-19 guidance on the RCPsych website. Some examples already submitted include terms such as "lithium", "capacity", "remote assessments" etc. Should you wish like to contribute to this A-Z list of terms, please email Emma Allen directly by 21 April 2020.
Finally, as Chair, I would like to express my sincere appreciation to our hard-working staff. During the current crisis, Emma, Thomas and Barry have been working above and beyond to ensure that members are kept abreast of all developments as they happen; that the website has been kept up to date; and that all meetings held via remote technology run smoothly for those of us who - and I include myself - could best be described as 'technophobic'.
Best wishes, Gerry Lynch