Southern Health offers new service to support patients with depression

11 January 2021

Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust have launched a new centre of treatment to support patients with mental health illness. The Neuromodulation Centre includes existing services and a new Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Therapy service (rTMS), offering a different treatment to patients with depression, with quick recovery and no need for anaesthetic.

rTMS is a treatment given to people who suffer from severe depression, who has not responded to antidepressants or psychological therapy. The treatment stimulates the brain and causes ‘neuroplasticity’ – which is the brain’s ability to mend and build connections between the nerve cells. This treatment is non-invasive and is given as an outpatient treatment, with immediate recovery.

The rTMS service was introduced earlier than planned due to the COVID-19 pandemic, allowing the service to be available to those struggling with their severe mental health issues during the lockdown.

Since the launch of the service, 20 patients have received treatment with one commenting “I have nothing but praise for the whole unit and am so pleased I was referred by my consultant psychiatrist”.

Karen Osola, Service Lead for Southern Health commented “This new service is allowing us to be leaders in this field. We are one of a handful of trusts nationwide which are delivering this treatment within the NHS, the first in the South. We hope this will transform how people with severe depression are treated in the future.”

Another patient who used rTMS service said, “When the time comes and I’m really struggling, I’ll at least know there is something that works for me.”

Find out more about the Neuromodulation Service. 

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