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ChatHealth is crowned national winners in the 2020 Nursing Times Awards

by Monika Gaubyte | Dec 15, 2020


Chathealth PR


Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Healthy Child Programme school nurses are joining in with the celebrations for the recent Nursing Times Award win for the innovative messaging service, ChatHealth, in the Nursing in Mental Health category.

ChatHealth is a nationally recognised secure and confidential text messaging service which allows young people aged 11-19 years old to easily and anonymously get in touch with a healthcare professional for advice and support on a wide range of issues that matter to them. These include, healthy eating, emotional health, healthy relationships, drugs, smoking, growing up, sex and sleep.

Since its initial launch, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Healthy Child Programme were one of the early adopters of the service which gives young people in the area an invaluable opportunity to talk about issues and worries that are standing in the way of leading a happy and healthy life. ChatHealth has now been implemented by more than 50 NHS Trusts and healthcare organisations across many healthcare services.

During the Covid-19 pandemic, access to face-to-face support has had to be limited, so having virtual access to healthcare has been extremely important in ensuring that young people across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough have had the vital support they need in these challenging times.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, ChatHealth text services have massively increased. Nationally, ChatHealth services have seen a 50% increase in young people seeking emotional health support. Cambridgeshire and Peterborough ChatHealth service alone received 2,726 messages and completed 131 conversations with young people locally.

Evidence has also shown that young people in particular like the fact that ChatHealth enables them to make discreet contact with health professionals ‘behind a screen’. The users from a recent digital focus group said:

“They have really helped me a lot with my anger and they helped me today as well.

"I just wanted to say thank you so much for all the help that I got from the group. I ended up getting a school counsellor and I am on a good path so far and I am fighting to keep it that way."

Andrea Graves, service lead for the programme said: “We are delighted to be part of the ChatHealth journey, which is an integral part of the services that we offer. Through ChatHealth we ensure that we are reactive and accessible for young people and families in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough who are in need of our support and this has been vital through the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Young People can send a message on 07480 635 443 Monday to Friday 9am-4pm to start a conversation with a ChatHealth nurse.


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