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Sutton's 1st Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Conference is a resounding success

On Wednesday, 21 November 2018, we held the first Sutton Perinatal and Infant Health Mental Health (PIMH) Conference for health and care professionals across Sutton.  The event, which was very well attended with almost 100 delegates, was opened by Councillor Ruth Dombey, Leader of Sutton Council and Chair of the Sutton Health and Wellbeing Board.

Cllr Dombey said "It is really encouraging to see so many colleagues working together to help improve issues of perinatal and infant mental health in Sutton.

"Our Sutton Plan partners from across charitable, health, local government and voluntary sectors have identified an important issue we need to address and a means of doing so.

"I look forward to continuing to work together to help improve the lives of local children, parents and families."

Anna Cassin, Assistant Director, Quality at NHS Sutton CCG said:  "The Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Network has delivered on the development of new services for mothers and their families in Sutton.

"The commitment and passion for improving access to early help has been achieved through leadership at all levels and through collaboration with partners.  Importantly, there was no budget but a commitment to work in different ways to meet the needs of families with young children.

"The network will continue in 2019 with new projects for pregnant mothers, a focus on developing infant mental health provision and continuing to support innovation amongst network members."

Presenters at the conference included Dr Ben Nereli, Consultant Perinatal Psychiatrist from South West London and St George's Mental Health Trust who gave an overview of the perinatal mental health services offered by the Trust.

Other presentations included updates on the achievements the Sutton Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Network has achieved in Sutton this year: 

  • Jane Dagnall, Specialist Health Visitor, Perinatal and Infant Mental Health, and Dr Wai Ho, Perinatal Mental Health Lead for Sutton Uplift presented on the development of the Wellbeing Space – a support group for women experiencing perinatal mental health issues.
  • Judith Armstrong, Sutton Home Start and Fiona Denton from the Sutton Mental Health Foundation updated the audience on the development of the Perinatal Mental Health Peer Support Service in Sutton.
  • Jo Goldsmith, Consultant Child Psychotherapist, Surrey PIMH talked about infant mental health during a child's first year.

A video which explains about the development of the Sutton PIMH Network is available on the Sutton Plan website here: