otrbristol | 31st July 2019

A note from OTR on our one-to-one service for 18+ year olds

OTR is making some changes to its services for young people aged 18+, so we wanted to write a note explaining our decision and future intentions.

OTR delivers mental health info and support throughout Bristol and South Gloucestershire to young people aged 11-25 years, across a range of settings and using a variety of different approaches, ranging from group and one-to-one therapy through to more community-based and peer-led support.

Historically, OTR has not been funded for its one-to-one work with those aged 18-25 and we have subsidised this offer ourselves, unlike our one-to-one offer for 11-18 year olds, which is funded by Health (BNSSG – Clinical Commissioning Group).

Due to a change in commissioned services, OTR will no longer be part of the delivery offer of IAPT (Increasing Access to Psychological Therapies). This offer is not disappearing and will be provided by Vita Health from September 2019 for individuals aged 18 and up. This change meant we needed to think really carefully about the impact on our offer to ensure that we are able to deliver services that we are formally funded for.

For these reasons we have taken the decision to close our one-to-one self-referral therapy to young people aged 18-25 with immediate effect.

We have not taken this decision lightly, and we understand that this may be disappointing news for some of you. We’d like to make it clear that we’re absolutely committed to the following:

  • Young people 18-25 already on the OTR waiting list will still be seen as agreed when they signed up.
  • OTR offers a wide range of support beyond one-to-one therapy that will still be available to 18-25 year olds, and some specialist one-to-one therapy will remain available when accessed as part of certain projects, i.e our LGBTQ+ offer via Freedom, or BME work with Zazi.
  • We will offer thorough signposting and onward referral for any individuals affected by this change.
  • Through our Hubs and the OTR website, 18-25 year olds can still come and get advice and signposting support to both OTR services and partner agencies.
  • The OTR offer remains the same for young people aged 18 and under.

We will spend the coming months reviewing and understanding what young people aged 18-25 would like from a service such as OTR and will be seeking support from funders both nationally and locally in order to develop the offer – this will include continuing to work with the local universities.