Jenny Walker

Mental Health Research Fellow

Jenny Walker

Jenny is an Inclusion Health & Homelessness Advanced Nurse Practitioner, Norfolk & Suffolk Foundation NHS Trust. For the past 5 years she has worked with patients who have often experienced hugely difficult life events yet remain resilient but frequently struggle to access the care that they need. The patients she works with often have multiple and complex physical and mental health needs, they may struggle with substance misuse and experience barriers both in accessing support during times of crisis but also in accessing the assessment and treatment that will assist them to make long-term positive changes to their lives. For the past year she has worked in a split role between the Community Mental Health Team and the Homelessness & Inclusion Health Team. 

Jenny's project is about how To consider how we provide effective mental health interventions and support to patient's experiencing multiple morbidities including: homelessness, poor mental and physical health, and substance use. 
The NHS aims to provide the right care, in the right place at the right time. However, many of the patients she works with experience significant barriers to accessing and receiving care from services. Over their life course, these patients many have experienced negative life events, adverse childhood experiences and may have a distrust of people and services. They may also live with a level of chaos, with multiple needs and these factors can create potential barriers to accessing the care they need. Patients have however been on their individual journeys and demonstrated considerable strengths and resilience. For many patients an enhanced level of input and efforts to go ‘above and beyond’ are needed to build rapport and relationships to allow an personalised approach to care to be provided. The current provision and design of services however does not always allow for this type of individualised care and can lead to patients being excluded from services. The project is therefore to consider the current evidence and literature and explore with patient and staff working within this field and consider based on this further research.