A specialist group within a talking therapies service has won an NHS award for its work ensuring access for all.

The local Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) service supports individuals in Coventry, Warwickshire and Solihull experiencing depression and anxiety through talking therapies.

Delivered in partnership between Coventry & Warwickshire Partnership NHS Trust (CWPT) and the mental health charity Coventry and Warwickshire Mind, it is a well-regarded service and shares best practice with others.

It serves its communities through specialist subgroups and one of the groups, the IAPT BME subgroup, was recognised at Coventry and Warwickshire Partnership NHS Trust’s Quality Awards on July 5th when CWPT  Chairman, Mr Jagtar Singh, named the subgroup winner of his special Chair’s Award.

The award is in honour of the BME subgroup’s work with black and minority ethnic communities to reduce the stigma of mental health and raise awareness of IAPT and access to the service in each of the IAPT localities, Coventry and Rugby, North Warwickshire, South Warwickshire and Solihull.

The group includes a representative from each IAPT locality and promotes the service through a range of community based activities. It also ensures IAPT literature is available in translated formats.

As a result of its work over the last three years, access to IAPT has risen within the following minority ethnic groups: Asian, up 12.9%, Black, up 21.9%, Mixed parentage, up 16.2%, and Eastern European, up 88.5%.

Steven Hill, Deputy CEO of Coventry & Warwickshire Mind and Chair of the IAPT BME subgroup, said:  “We were delighted when the chairman announced that he was giving his special award to the IAPT BME subgroup. I would like to say a massive well done to all members of the subgroup as I know that they have worked really hard to raise the profile of IAPT among BME communities to ensure that IAPT is a service that is available to all.”

Photo caption (Left to right): Jagtar Singh, Chair of CWPT, Rano Bains, Head of Equality and Diversity CWPT, Dr Michelle Webster, IAPT Clinical Lead / Principal Clinical Psychologist, Steven Hill, Coventry and Warwickshire Mind Deputy CEO/Chair of IAPT BME Subgroup, Natalia Piusinska, Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner (PWP) North Warwickshire IAPT Team, Maarya Abwat-Johnson, PWP Coventry IAPT Team.