This information is for people who’ve been referred to one of our Community Mental Health Teams (CMHTs) in Leeds.
Not everyone who is referred is offered an assessment, but we will always write back to the person who referred you with further advice.
If you are offered an assessment, we understand you might be anxious about meeting someone new and talking about your mental health, and will not know what to expect. This information has been written to help you prepare for your appointment so you get the most out of it, and to signpost you to some other resources and organisations which could also help.
How long will I have to wait until I see someone?
It normally takes up to two weeks to be seen. A member of our team may try to contact you by phone, during this time, to find out how you are and to ask for some more information to help with the assessment.
Where will I need to go?
We have three CMHTs and each covers an area of Leeds. The locations and contacts for these teams appear on the right of this page (or at the bottom if you’re on a smartphone).
You will be referred to the service which is linked to your GP surgery so it might not be the nearest to where you live. It might be that we see you at one of our bases, but there are a range of different places we can see you and we will do our best to make sure this is convenient for you. The relevant team will send you an appointment either in the post or via email with information about where to go.
It’s very important to contact the team (or ask someone else to do this if this is difficult for you) to let them know if you can’t make the appointment. Sometimes, if you are not able to leave your house, your assessment may take place at your home.
Our colleagues at MindWell have produced this short video on what to expect when you’ve been referred to a community mental health team.
Your first meeting with the community team is usually with a mental health nurse or a community occupational therapist rather than a psychiatrist (mental health doctor). During this appointment we will try to understand together what difficulties you might be having.
Your appointment may last for up to an hour. This is because talking about your mental health is something that can’t be rushed and it’s important that you have the time to share all the information that may be useful.
We understand that you might feel anxious coming to this appointment. Staff are trained and experienced in understanding mental health difficulties and we will treat you in a way that is kind and non-judgemental. You are welcome to bring someone to support you.
The information that you give during the meeting is confidential. We will only share it within the community team and with your GP (or with the person who referred you). We do not share your information with other professionals or people unless there is a significant risk to you. We will always inform you I we need to do this.
How can I prepare?
It is important for you to think about what type of support you could find useful. It is understandable that you might not know what could help, so it may be easier for you to think about what your main worries or priorities are, what you would like to achieve, or how things could feel better for you.
DocReady is a useful app and can help you to prepare and identify what you feel you need most support with
We will ask about your current medication, so it will help for you to bring a list of these with you
You will also be asked to complete a couple of standard forms and bring them to your appointment
What happens after my assessment?
One of our team will contact you to talk about the assessment and how you can best be supported. There are lots of different options according to your individual needs. Some of these could include:
A social prescribing service which could help you to access a range of non-medical services or activities to improve your health or wellbeing.
Support from another agency such as Mind, or specialist service such as Forward Leeds who support people experiencing problems with alcohol and drugs.
A talking therapy which is a kind of treatment which involves talking to a therapist about your thoughts and feelings. Before accessing talking therapy, you will have further assessment with a therapist to ensure therapy it is the right thing for you.
Medication prescribed by your GP.
Being allocated a care coordinator who will develop a care plan with you to meet your needs.
Sometimes people may have further assessment with a psychiatrist or may be offered an appointment with a psychiatrist as part of their care plan.
We recommend the following places where you can find helpful and reliable information with links to further help and support.
MindWell is the single ‘go to’ website for information about mental health in Leeds. It includes advice on practical help with things like housing, benefits or money problems.
MindMate is a Leeds-based website for younger people, their families and the professionals who support them. It covers emotional wellbeing and mental health issues and offers information about where support is available.
NHS Choices website
NHS Choices is the official website of the National Health Service in England. It provides a comprehensive health information service helping you to make the best choices about your health and lifestyle, but also about making the most of NHS and social care services in England.
NHS 111 service
You can call the NHS 111 service 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, if:
you need medical help fast but it’s not a 999 emergency
you think you need to go to A&E or need another NHS urgent care service
you don’t know who to call or you don’t have a GP to call
you need health information or reassurance about what to do next
For less urgent health needs, you should contact your GP or a local pharmacist in the usual way. If a health professional has given you a specific phone number to call when you are concerned about your condition, continue to use that number. For immediate, life-threatening emergencies, always call 999.
Please note this is not comprehensive list of services but a few suggestions of how to get started finding help and information.