The winners of the 2017 Social Worker of the Year Awards were revealed at a glittering awards ceremony in London on the 24th November. Entries for next year's awards will open in March 2018.

Daytime AMHP Team, Devon County Council

Team of the Year, Adult Services

 

 

Devon’s new daytime AMHP service was set up in response to a familiar litany of problems. These included high stress levels among the county’s AMHPs, high staff turnover, and practitioners being isolated in different mental health teams.

 

Following a full launch in June 2015, these issues have been addressed, something the judges described as “very significant, in a service area which in most places is in crisis”. Through embedding reflective practice and peer supervision, the team has also succeeded in placing social work values at the heart of an often medical-dominated area.

 

The AMHP service comprises a central unit and five locality teams. AMHPs work flexibly across the whole county, travelling as needed to deal with local spikes in referrals. During quieter times they are encouraged to work on development of themselves and their service.

 

Taking time off in lieu is also something the management team insist on, helping ease the pressure of the job. Turnover has stabilised, and with an eye on the longer term, a new ‘trainee AMHP’ role has been developed. This not only adds support to the team but has helped increase numbers of applicants wanting to train as AMHPs to a 10-year high

 

What was said about the Daytime AMHP Team:

 

“Absolutely loved it – a great nomination. Passion ran through and social work values are clearly at the heart of practice. The team is service-user centred and leadership came across very strongly." Rob Mitchell, Newly Qualified Adult Social Worker of the Year Award Winner

 

“This team has been designed and shaped by practitioners following authentic consultation and although responsible for a specific statutory function, has ensured a wider focus on good social work practice in mental health and supporting locality teams and health colleagues to do the best for people in mental health crisis.” Lyn Romeo, Chief Social Worker for Adults

 

“The Central AMHP team are an invaluable resource for Devon Partnership NHS Trust. They have a wealth of knowledge and experience, and are always accessible and helpful. They work incredibly well together as a team and also actively seek out ways to expand their role and ensure continuity.” Dr L.F, Consultant Psychiatrist

 

“The Devon AMHP team have been at the forefront of service improvement for some of the most vulnerable people who use our service and have shaped the service to be responsive, efficient and effective. They are universally held in very high regard both internally and externally.” Director of Operations, Devon Partnership NHS Trust

 

Judges:

  • Andrew Williamson, Exeter Primary Care
  • Annie Hudson, Lambeth Council
  • Nick Berbiers, Children's Services Alliance
  • Paul Ringer, Spurgeons
  • Sarah Read O'Toole, Skylakes Social Work

 

Finalists:

  • Barnstaple Community Health and Social Care Team, Devon County Council
  • Daytime AMHP Team, Devon County Council - GOLD AWARD WINNER
  • Derbyshire Deaf Team, Derbyshire County Council - SILVER AWARD WINNER
  • OP Tendring Team 1, Essex County Council
  • Warwickshire Employment Support Team, Warwickshire County Council