Skip to main content

Force Control Room Mental Health Co-ordinator


Cleveland police Force Control Room (FCR) receives a large amount of calls per day (1100-1200). Around 48% of these calls relate to and have a mental health marker. When the police are using the “THRIVE” risk tool, a mental health marker can influence the priority a call is given and any police action taken.

Lack of timely information and advice can mean Police can be deployed to events which do not require Police presence. If deployed, Police may require advice and input to allow for a more appropriate and informed response. Police officers are not best placed to deal with people experience mental health problems or those experiencing mental health crisis as they do not have the knowledge, skills or training for this.

It was acknowledged in both a national and local context that a Mental Health Triage service needed to be introduced into the Police Force Control room to address this matter. The urgent care services across Tees would be complimented by the role of the FCR nurse advisor within the FCR.
Force Control Room Mental Health Co-ordinator


The purpose of this piece of work was to establish a Mental Health Nurse in the FCR to offer expert advice and guidance to control room staff and on the ground officers. The main overall aims were to:

  • Enable any member of the public experiencing mental health distress coming into contact with a Police Officer to be triaged by a Mental Health Professional that possesses the skills and knowledge to manage the issues at the earliest opportunity
  • Further reduce the number of S136 detentions made by the police who are then taken to the Crisis Assessment Suite (CAS) at Roseberry Park Hospital (RPH)
  • Offer an alternative service to A&E attendance or access via the NHS 111 telephone service
  • Reduce the number of calls that Police are deployed to
  • Improve mental health knowledge base of police and call room staff by providing formal and informal training sessions
  • Improve patient experience
  • Promote suicide prevention and actively support self-harm reduction
  • Work as part of the evolving Urgent Care Service, including early intervention, diversion from A&E, out of hours GPs, Urgent Care centres and police custody
  • Reduce unnecessary pressures on partnership agencies, including Police, A&E and GP Practices

The task was to establish a FCRMHC in the Cleveland Police FCR that would provide immediate support to control room staff that are involved in decision making processes for call triage and officers on the ground that would benefit from patient risk and management information.


  • Project group established to develop a service model and roles & responsibilities matrix along with data requirements,
  • Cost the proposed service model
  • Source funding to be able to implement the service
  • Apply for AHSN grant and submit funding proposal to partner agencies
  • Develop KPI’s and data collection template to enable a robust evaluation to be completed
  • Monitor the service on a quarterly basis and submit performance metrics to AHSN
  • Evaluate the service and the impact that it has had on the local population
  • Input as part of the Tees Crisis Service Review
  • Evaluation paper submitted to Tees Crisis Care Concordat and partner agencies
  • Source additional funding to extend the service for 6 months
  • Refresh data collection template based on partner agencies requirements
  • Develop the service along with the outcomes of the Tees Crisis Service Review


  • Managed to secure funding for 12 months which came from an AHSN grant, 4 local authorities, Two CCG’s, Cleveland Police and TEWV.
  • The service demonstrated great outcomes with a further reduction of S136 detentions of over 20% and an increase in the percentage of individuals being admitted to hospital that had been detained under S136. This shows that those being detained under S136 were unwell enough to require an inpatient admission so they are being detained for the right reasons
  • Police and control room staff have increased confidence in dealing with mental health related calls and feel they are better prepared when visiting callers/calls related to mental health/self-harm as they are provided with the expert advice.
  • The police have seen a 34% reduction in the number of calls where they would normally have been deployed. This has provided additional capacity for the Police
  • The FCRMHC has access to TEWV’s clinical care record within the FCR which allows for MH clinical information to be shared at the point of contact with the FCR rather than ringing Crisis or another MH team etc.
  • All new recruits to Cleveland Police have a training session with the mental health Co-ordinator. Training includes topics such as Mental Health Act, Mental Capacity Act, and Risk Management etc.
  • Due to the success over the 12 months, NECS colleagues have been able to secure a further 6 months funding to extend the service. Work on sustaining the service beyond 31st March 2019 is ongoing and will link to the Crisis Review work that has been conducted across Durham, Darlington and Tees.