The Surrey High Intensity Partnership Programme (SHIPP) supports people who have severe and enduring mental ill-health and who frequently present to the emergency services such as the police, ambulance and A&E departments.
It is designed to steer people away from these services, if they are not appropriate, to those which are more equipped to help with mental health needs and can support long-term recovery. The aim is to improve people’s quality of life by ensuring they receive the right support at the right time to help them better manage their mental health and reduce their dependency on emergency services.
SHIPP is provided by our Trust in partnership with Surrey Police.
Who can be referred onto SHIPP?
People who present frequently to the emergency services due to mental health needs. They may also have displayed behaviours that could cause harm to themselves or had an impact on those around them and it is felt they would benefit from the support of this programme.
To be referred onto SHIPP, a person must be receiving support from our Community Mental Health Recovery Support Service (CMHRS).
How does SHIPP provide support?
SHIPP is made up of qualified mental health practitioners and police officers called SHIPP co-ordinators. They work closely with the person referred and their CMHRS care co-ordinator, and together they develop a tailored care plan. The plan helps the person to better understand and manage their mental health needs and ensures they have access to the right support.
These plans are also a guide for professionals working in the emergency services so they know how best to support the person should they present in crisis. They also help professionals to be consistent in their response.
Many people have seen a significant improvement in their quality of life and found they are much better equipped to manage their emotions and behaviours when experiencing a mental health crisis following their involvement in SHIPP.
They have commented on the benefits of moving away from emergency services to mental health services that are able to provide specialist support in more therapeutic environments and therefore better aid their long-term recovery.
What happens following referral?
There is an initial meeting with the person being referred, their CMHRS care coordinator and allocated SHIPP co-ordinator, to explain the programme and answer any questions. The meeting will also explore the triggers for some of the person’s behaviours and discuss how these can be managed and how best to seek appropriate support.
A further meeting is then set up with all professionals involved in the person’s care to create the care plan. It is important the person being referred is involved in writing this plan and that they communicate what they would like to see included. This helps us to better support them and means they are taking an active role in their recovery.
How long is a person involved in SHIPP?
A person tends to be involved in SHIPP for a maximum of eighteen months.
There is a stepping down process that takes place before the end of this period. Working with the person's CMHRS care-coordinator and our Recovery College, a plan is put in place to support the person with their continued recovery.
How carers can help
The support of a relative or friend can make a huge difference to a person’s involvement in SHIPP. They can provide the encouragement and support needed to help a person achieve their goals. We recommend people involve family members and friends in all aspects of their SHIPP care plan.
Our health professionals working with the person who has been referred will keep records about their care and treatment. However, we only collect the personal data required to ensure a person receives the support they need.
For more information about how data is held, please go to our information sharing page.
If you would like to find out more about SHIPP and how to refer a person onto the programme, please email:
SHIPP was highly commended at the 2020 HSJ Awards in the category of Mental Health Innovation.