During this difficult time and with everyone working so hard, we know that our staff need more support now than ever. That's why we have compiled the below lists of all the new local discounts to help ease the financial pressures, and all of the support available to help cope with the added stress.
Support Services for Staff
BSUH HELP Service
It is normal to feel worried, stressed, anxious and fearful when we hear of the Coronavirus spreading and the loss of lives. Donna Butler, Lead psychotherapist for the BSUH HELP Service has put together some useful tips to help us cope. You can find these here.
To ensure front line staff have the best possible support during this difficult time, the HELP team have prepared a priority telephone helpline. This is open from 9am - 5pm, Monday to Friday on 63691 or 67904.
Find out more about the BSUH HELP service on info-net here.
The Vivup Employee Assistance 24/7 Helpline
This is a 24/7 helpline to ensure that help is available to all BSUH staff, especially with the additional
stress of COVID-19. Talk to a professional advisor for help with anxiety, bereavement, stress, depression, workplace issues, trauma, relationships, finances and family difficulties. Call the helpline anytime on 03303 800658 or visit the Vivup website here to find the full range of services available.
NHS Mental Health Helpline
Call 0300 131 7000 or text FRONTLINE to 85258
Launched by NHS England for nurses and other front line staff who need support with their mental health during the Covid-19 pandemic. Open 07:00 - 11:00 every day and the text service is 24/7.
The British Medical Association 24/7 Helpline
Wellbeing services are available from the British Medical Association for doctors and medical students. There is a range of services and information to help support you. The BMA counselling service is open 24/7 to all doctors and medical students, it’s confidential and free of charge, just call 0330 123 1245.
Other resources include:
Counselling and peer support
GMC Investigation support
Psychotherapy for doctors
Sources of support for your wellbeing
To find out more information, visit the BMA website here.
Bereavement Support Line
Hospice UK are running a confidential bereavement support line for NHS staff to access for free from 08:00 - 20:00. A team of fully qualified and trained bereavement specialists are available to support you with bereavement and wellbeing issues relating to loss experienced through your work. Call 03003034434
Project Wingman, a charity run by airline pilots and crew, has partnered with the Health & Wellbeing Team to provide additional support to our frontline staff during this time. They are now providing 'first class lounges' for all staff at both PRH and RSCH at the following times and places:
At RSCH on the first floor of the Horizon Centre from 11:00 - 15:00 Mondays to Fridays
At PRH in the Heroes' Lounge on the first floor 09:00 - 19:00 Mondays to Fridays, and 11:00 - 15:00 Saturdays and Sundays
Staff are invited to drop in before, after or during a shift to decompress, switch off, have a chat and cup of tea and be looked after by uniformed aircrew who understand and empathise with the challenges of working in a pressurised and stressful environment.
The Well is an established social network and emotional support group that is run through Facebook. Initially set up to provide mindfulness, yoga sessions, social events and workshops, it will now offer online resources including virtual meditation and mindfulness classes, yoga, online community support, crafty videos and information on self-care.
You can join this group by clicking here.
Whilst staying at home and watching Netflix might sounds great to begin with, socially distancing from others and changing your daily routine is not as easy as it sounds! Similarly, if you’re still at work and things are getting stressful, the team at Mind have put together some fantastic resources to help you cope:
Plan for staying at home or indoors
Take care of your mental health and wellbeing
Checklist: are you ready to stay at home?
Handwashing and anxiety
Taking care with news and information
To find out more, visit the Mind website here.
Better Health - Every Mind Matters
Having good mental health helps us relax more, achieve more and enjoy our lives more. The Every Mind Matters Campaign has been continuously updated to support people during the COVID-19 outbreak, and has a COVID-19 hub that includes tips and support on how to deal with change, cope with money worries and how to look after your mental wellbeing while staying at home. It also includes a personalised 'Mind Plan' tool as well as practical tips and videos from experts on dealing with stress and anxiety, boosting your mood, sleeping better and what you can do to help others – including advice for parents and for children and young people.
NHS One You
Making better choices today can have a big impact on your health. One You is here to help you get healthier and feel better with free tips, tools and support. Whether it's moving more, eating more healthily or checking yourself – One You can help you make small, practical changes that fit in with your life. To find out more, visit the website here.
Elefriends is a supportive online community where you can be yourself. We all know what it’s like to struggle sometimes, but now there’s a safe place to listen, share and be heard. To find out more information or to sign up, visit their website here.
Staff In Mind - Sussex Health and Care Partnership
Staff In Mind is a wellbeing support hub for all health, NHS and care staff working within the Sussex Health and Care Partnership Integrated Care System. The service is for people experiencing emotional or psychological difficulties who are less likely to seek help or who may prefer not to access the occupational health and wellbeing support that is available where they work. It gives you the opportunity to complete a self-assessment about how you’re feeling, have a confidential follow-up assessment with a clinician and receive priority access to mental health treatment.
NHS Virtual Staff Common Rooms
Colleagues in the national People Team in partnership with NHS Practitioner Health have developed virtual Staff Common Rooms for colleagues across the NHS. This is an opportunity for staff to come together virtually and support each other during this difficult time. They are open to absolutely anyone working within the NHS across England, regardless of job role, organisational context or hierarchy and includes all final year students who have been working on the Covid-19 pandemic. Click below for more information:
BAME Covid-19 Staff Support
Our BAME Covid-19 Support Volunteers have been supporting colleagues since Summer 2020. They can help provide support and guidance relating to issues concerning Covid-19 and they work closely with the Freedom to Speak Up Guardian and the Inclusion Team.
Our current Volunteers are:
Nelson Barbon -
Nicola Dayani-Gornall -
Fadzai Fadairo -
Kali Varadarajan -
Christopher Liu -
Natalie Opoku -
Chetan Trivedy -
Dawn Heeger - (from March 2021)
Zingy Thetho -
Matthew Sanderson -
Maryjosephin Renny -
Accessible information about COVID-19
A curated document of links to information about COVID-19 in community languages and BSL, information for people of different faiths, learning disability, autism.
Mentoring BAME colleagues
A 4-minute video about the importance of mentoring and sponsoring BAME colleagues, some of the issues they are facing and how to approach it. You can also watch the recording of the webinar on supporting BAME colleagues (29/04/2020) here.
Social Stigma Associated with Covid-19
LGBTQ+ Health Inequalities
A short briefing sheet outlining the impact of the COVID-19 safety measures for LGBT people and the support available from the LGBT Foundation.
MindOut - LGBTQ+ Mental Health Service
MindOut is a mental health service run by and for lesbians, gay, bisexual, trans, and queer people. They work to improve the mental health and wellbeing of LGBTQ+ communities and to make mental health a community concern.
They welcome all LGBTQ+ people and those who may not identify as LGBTQ+ including men who have sex with men, women who have sex with women, intersex people, people who previously identified as trans and people who are questioning their sexual and/or gender identities. If in doubt, please do contact them at email@example.com or call 01273 234839 or visit their website at http://www.mindout.org.uk/
Childcare for Key Workers
With the new lockdown announced on Monday, everyone is encouraged to stay at home as much as possible. Schools have been told to move to online learning until at least the February half term.
As an NHS employee, you qualify as a key worker and are entitled to take up a school place at your child’s school. In case you need evidence of your key worker status, we have produced a letter for you to give to your child’s school.
In addition, there are several other childcare options available:
Early Years settings (including nurseries and childminders) remain open
Vulnerable children and children of critical workers can continue to use registered childcare, childminders and other childcare activities (including wraparound care)
Parents can form a childcare bubble with one other household for the purposes of informal childcare, where the child is under 14. This is mainly to enable parents to work, and must not be used to enable social contact between adults
Some households will also be able to benefit from being in a support bubble
Nannies will be able to continue to provide services, including in the home
To find out more about what's available around Brighton and East Sussex, or for other helpful resources, click on the links below:
Childcare Services Brighton: For more information, or to register your interest in finding an At Home Child-Carer, please contact 01273 293 545 or email
Place2Be Webinar Series - Resources and support to help NHS working parents, carers and their families during COVID-19
The BBC are now showing curriculum-based programmes on TV for both primary and secondary school levels. The primary programmes will be broadcast on CBBC from 09:00 every day and will include BBC Live Lessons and BBC Bitesize Daily as well as Our School, Celebrity Supply Teacher, Horrible Histories and Operation Ouch. BBC Two will cater for secondary students with programming to support the GCSE curriculum, including adaptations of Shakespeare plays alongside science, history and factual titles. To see what's available click here, you can also watch them on iPlayer.
Perks at Work
To express their gratitude for NHS workers, Perks at Work are providing free access to their courses for all Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust staff. During lockdown, they set up Caring for the Caregivers, which is a free to access benefits platform, exclusive to NHS workers. The platform encompasses financial discounts and emotional and mental wellbeing and support. They also run 100+ free live classes every week, ranging from adult wellness (meditation, yoga, kickboxing) to children enrichment (coding, dance, beatboxing). Some highlight courses include:
If you would like to look at the platform for yourself, simply go to www.perksatwork.com/nhs and register for free.
Support for families and relationships
Ineqe resources for explaining Coronavirus to children
Mental health for children and young people
Young Minds advice for families and young people on managing their mental health
Mind - information for young people who are worried about Coronavirus
Gov.uk - guidance on supporting children and young people’s mental health & wellbeing
British Psychological Society - support and advice for schools and parents/carers
Children, young people and adults with autism
The National Autistic Society - resources for autistic people and families
Autism Hampshire – resources for individuals and families affected by autism
Autistictic - blogpost on strategies for coping with Coronavirus as an autistic person.
Austistica – guidance on managing employees with autism during Coronavirus.
Specialist Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND)
Gov.uk - advice for parents and carers looking after children with SEND including many links, guidance for specific age groups and particular needs
Support4SEND in Surrey - information and advice including home learning, letters to parents, a wide range of helplines and online support
A range of resources for older people and their family
Alzheimer’s Society - information for people affected by dementia.
The Silver Line
Worried about an older friend, relative or neighbour? Refer them to The Silver Line, a free confidential helpline providing information, friendship and advice to people aged 55 or older, 24/7. Call 08004708090 or visit the website here.
The King's Fund
For information on why compassionate leadership matters in a crisis, visit The King's Fund website here.
Our NHS People Guidance on Good Leadership
For guidance on good leadership during bereavement and complex grief visit the Our NHS People website here.
10 Minute Pause Space
Webinar: Coaching Style Conversations through crisis and recovery
Leadership Support Circles
A series of short, themed online sessions based on 10 behaviours for leading compassionately during Covid-19. A space for people managers at all levels to come together, share their experiences and be heard. Circles are multi-disciplinary, interactive and provide evidence-based guidance and tools. Access the link here to sign up.
Find out about the 10 evidenced-based behaviours for leading through COVID-19 here.
Stay Fit for Work with Our Free MSK Physiotherapy Service
For many NHS staff the current Covid-19 pandemic has increased the physical and psychological demands of their work. This then unfortunately may put staff at higher risk of musculoskeletal injuries. During this challenging time Occupational Health physiotherapy and MSK physiotherapy services are working collaboratively to provide an in-house physiotherapy service for all BSUH workers who may be struggling with musculoskeletal issues. If you are struggling to work because of aches and pains and would like a virtual consultation from a physiotherapist you can now self-refer through the BSUH Occupational Health page accessed on the info-net. Click here and complete the online self-referral form. The OH or MSK physiotherapy team will then contact you directly to arrange a suitable telephone appointment. Alternatively, for additional information visit the MSK/Physiotherapy Hub here or get some tips for working from home here.
Free yoga sessions are being run specifically for BSUH NHS workers! These take place on Wednesdays at 18:00 and are being run by yoga teacher Jenny! Sessions will be for 1 hour and will be held on Zoom. The classes will also be recorded and available for 24 hours to do later if you aren’t free at that time. To join Zoom click here and the Meeting ID is 743 495 375.
Triyoga are offering nine free weekly livestream classes in a variety of yoga styles exclusively for front line workers.Classes are available six days a week, at varying times, and offer something to everyone, from vinyasa flow to yoga to aid sleep, including classes for those who have never done yoga before.
The NHS Fitness Studio
When self-isolating and staying at home, it’s important to keep moving to maintain fitness and look after our mental health. The NHS Fitness Studio has everything you need to keep healthy when at home. Take your pick from 24 free instructor-led videos across our aerobics exercise, strength and resistance, and pilates and yoga categories. These workouts have been created by fitness experts at InstructorLive and range from 10 to 45 minutes.
#DoingOurBit Free Workouts
#DoingOurBit is a platform of over 40 free workouts for NHS staff. Inspired by NHS key worker Julie Davis, who wanted to support her colleagues with access to free fitness during lockdown and beyond, #DoingOurBit was created by leading fitness industry businesses Active IQ, Study Active and Fibodo. Each gave their time generously and freely, as did all 28 PTs whose workouts are featured, to ‘give back’ and ‘do their bit’ to support the hardworking NHS. To sign up for free as an NHS worker click here.
My Studio F Zumba Classes
Zumba teacher Federico is very kindly offering free online Zumba classes for anyone with an nhs.net email address! Click the website to sign up and join a class www.mystudiof.com
Free Weekly Art Workshops
For NHS staff who may be feeling anxious or stressed
I’ll show you simple and fun creative projects that are great for calming the mind.
Delivered in an informal and relaxed atmosphere - easy techniques that require no previous art experience. Workshops will be drop in sessions on Zoom on Tuesdays 10:30-11:30.
Bring a cuppa some paper and pens and see how being creative can bring you
peace of mind
Please get in touch for more details - or 07717 665200
Creating art in any form can be a great way to de-stress, distract and cope with the current situation. We would like to offer the opportunity for people to send through pictures of artworks created during these difficult times. We hope we will then be able to present and sell these pieces as part of a BSUH exhibition, with all funds going back into the BSUH charity. There will also be prizes for the best art pieces submitted.
Please e-mail any submissions to Cristina Gatti (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your name, role and a title for your art piece.
Headspace are offering free subscriptions to Headspace Plus for all NHS staff until the end of the year. All NHS employees with an nhs.net, nhsemployers.org and nhs.uk email address are eligible to receive full access to Headspace Plus, along with resources from the Headspace for Work program. To sign up click here.
SilverCloud Health is a leading digital mental health company that is the result of over 17 years of clinical research with leading academic institutions. The platform is validated through randomised control trials and real-world data from over 350,000 SilverCloud users. They are offering free wellbeing support for all NHS staff and their families, to sign up click here and use the access code NHS2020.
Unmind is a workplace mental health platform that empowers organisations and employees to measurably improve their mental wellbeing by providing tools and training across the entire spectrum of mental health. Unmind are offering a free subscription to NHS staff until the end of December, to sign up click here.
Sleepio is a clinically-evidenced sleep improvement programme that is fully automated and highly personalised, using cognitive behavioural techniques to help improve poor sleep. Free access to Sleepio is available for all NHS staff from now until 31 December, click here.
Daylight is a smartphone-based app that provides help to people experiencing symptoms of worry and anxiety, using evidence-based cognitive behavioural techniques, voice and animation. This is free to access for all NHS staff from now until 31 December, click here.
The mindfulness and meditation app Calm have introduced a new initiative, Calm Health. This makes it simpler for healthcare practitioners to access mindfulness tools that can then be shared with clients, whilst also experiencing the benefits for themselves. This initiative provides healthcare practitioners with:
A free one-year premium subscription (worth £35)
A shareable overview of the benefits of mindfulness meditation
A one-month premium trial to Calm for all clients and patients
To find out more information and sign up, visit the website here.
An app that offers culturally sensitive and diverse meditations curated for the black, Asian and minority ethnic (BME) community is now available free to staff in the NHS. The app, which has been made available by NHS England and NHS Improvement partnering with the Liberate Meditation app, aims to reduce anxiety, alleviate stress and promote rest.
With your free subscription, you can access:
experienced teachers that identify as black, indigenous and people of colour
guided meditations on topics such as sleep, mindfulness, grief, and anxiety
a supportive and empowering digital community
To sign up for free click here.
The Silver Line
Worried about an older friend, relative or neighbour? Refer them to The Silver Line, a free confidential helpline providing information, friendship and advice to people aged 55 or older, 24/7. Call 0800 4 70 80 90 or visit the website here.
BSUH COVID-19 Info-Net Page
This page is updated regularly and contains relevant links and information on Coronavirus published nationally, click here.
BSUH COVID-19 Workplace Group
Join the BSUH COVID-19 Workplace group for up to date information and notices, click here.
Centre for Disease Control
The outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) may be stressful for people. Fear and anxiety about a disease can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children. Coping with stress will make you, the people you care about, and your community stronger. For useful tips and advice in managing and reducing anxiety and stress visit the CDC website here.
The first part of new COVID-19 guidance for the NHS workforce is now available on the NHS Employers website and covers staff health, safety and wellbeing, including advice on dealing with COVID-19 from Public Health England and the NHS Staff Council; occupational health services; staff with co-morbidities; personal protective equipment and emotional and mental support during the emergency period. To find out the latest information, visit their website here.
For the latest guidance and advice published by the government, click here. This will also be updated on the BSUH COVID-19 info-net page and Workplace group.