£1.2m in funding will help more people suffering from early signs of psychosis

The NSFT's headquarters at Hellesdon Hospital. Photo: Bill Smith

The NSFT's headquarters at Hellesdon Hospital. Photo: Bill Smith - Credit: Archant � 2012

More people suffering from the early signs of psychosis will have access to treatment thanks to an additional £1.2m in funding.

The Early Intervention in Psychosis Service is expanding its reach to care for people aged between 14 and 65 from April 1.

It comes as Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT), which runs the service, received funding from Norfolk's five clinical commissioning groups (CCGs).

The trust is now recruiting an additional 18 whole-time equivalent staff, including doctors, administrators and therapists.

The expanded service will offer a range of help to reduce the impact psychosis symptoms, including intensive case manager support and psychological therapies.

Psychosis causes people to perceive or interpret things differently from those around them.

Symptoms can include hallucinations or delusions, and people with psychosis can also feel paranoid, confused, irritable or depressed.

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Hannah Nearney, consultant psychiatrist with NSFT, said: 'This additional funding from our commissioners will make a real difference to people with psychosis in Norfolk, particularly those aged 35 – 65 by making sure they receive the specialist help they need quickly.

'This can have a big impact on their recovery while significantly reducing the rate of relapse, risk of suicide and the number of times they may need to go into hospital.'

Previously, patients aged between 35 and 65 with suspected psychosis would be referred to NSFT's adult service which does not offer a specialist Early Intervention in Psychosis approach.

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