26 July 2018 - Ambulance Service Supports Patients to Boost their Mental Wellbeing North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) and the Mental Health Foundation have joined forces to provide advice to help people look after their mental health. A leaflet containing tips from the Mental Health Foundation to encourage people to boost their mental wellbeing has been produced by NWAS and is being shared with people travelling to and from non-urgent healthcare appointments on its Patient Transport Service (PTS). The leaflet distribution is part of an ongoing scheme launched by NWAS in October 2017 aimed at making the most of the 1.5 million patient journeys undertaken by PTS each year across the North West region, by taking the opportunity to hand out leaflets about various important health topics. Previous topics include leaflets about the seasonal flu vaccination, staying well in winter and a collaboration with Age UK focussing on how to live healthily and happily for longer. The most recent leaflet – “Looking After Your Mental Wellbeing” - was developed following survey feedback from PTS staff and patients who said they would like to see advice on mental health matters provided through the scheme. Nathan Hearn, PTS Contract Delivery Manager, said “Our PTS team is continuing its mission to contribute to health prevention and promotion through the distribution of usefulinformation and advice. “Mental wellbeing is an essential part of our health and is just as important as physical health. By making just a few small changes, we can boost our mental wellbeing, contributing to our overall health and helping us to be happier and healthier.” Alongside the leaflet about mental wellbeing, PTS staff are also working in partnership with local health organisations, distributing area specific leaflets for North Cumbria, St Helens, Blackpool and Fylde/Wyre CCGs on a range of subjects from bowel cancer screening, medicines wastes and a directory of local health services for patients. PTS crews handing out health information leaflets is just one of a number of service improvements currently being made across NWAS, as part of the Transforming Patient Care programme. The programme has already seen the introduction of a number of initiatives to improve care for patients, by supporting them in the right way as early on in their NHS experiences as possible.