We’re representing you! We have responses to your questions about the wellbeing and student services

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Students have given feedback about student support and wellbeing services through the Union. We’ve taken these to the university and got the following responses for you:

 

Students highlighted the cost of taking a dyslexia test. One student asked: Dyslexia testing, why charge those who do not show up rather than those who do. Surely a £50 deposit would be better?

The university said:

The University pays £200 towards a test for Dyslexia. A student can have this test with any organisation that is qualified to assess. If the student wants to take their Dyslexia Test at the University they are asked to pay the remaining £50.00 contribution to the full cost of £250.00 as a deposit. The remaining £200.00 is paid for by Student Wellbeing:

  • If a student pays a £50.00 deposit and fails to attend their assessment, they will lose their deposit.  This is paid to the Educational Psychologist as a cancellation fee.  Any further assessment will require a new deposit of £50.00.
  • If a student pays a £50.00 deposit and cancels their assessment within an agreed timescale, they can receive a refund of the £50.00 deposit.

 

One student stated: The DSA equipment supplier closed so we cannot access repairs

The university responded:

If you are unable to get in contact with your equipment supplier or your supplier is no longer operating as a business, please contact DSA in the first instance. Contacts for DSA:

For Student Finance England (SFE):

Phone: 0300 100 0607

Email: dsa_team@slc.co.uk

For NHS Student Bursaries:

Telephone: 0300 330 1345

Online: use their online form

For Student Finance Wales (SFW):

Telephone: 0300 200 4050

For Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS)

Phone: 0300 555 0505

https://www.saas.gov.uk/contact.htm

In the meantime should you require any assistance please get in touch with the Disability Team via: disabilityteam@derby.ac.uk  /  Helpline 3-4pm Mon-Fri: 01332 592000  /  Student Wellbeing Centre, T-Block at Kedleston Road or Brook House

The disability team will be able to provide practical solutions whilst your equipment is being repaired or replaced. Depending on the type of equipment and your warranty, they will advise you on your options to get your equipment repaired.

 

Students gave feedback about the wellbeing services. One student asked: What additional support can students access while waiting for wellbeing appointments?

The university responded:

All students are triaged and those identified as being at risk are contacted as a priority and seen as appropriate. In addition, students can be added to a waiting list for cancellations.

Students can also access –

  • Wellbeing resources - 1st floor library.
  • Speaking to wellbeing advisors regarding the ‘Wellbeing MOT’
  • One off appointment for sleep problems
  • There are free yoga sessions and mindfulness at the Multi Faith Centre and yoga at Brit Mill on a weekly basis. 
  • There are many self-help resources available on the internet, and students are encouraged to access these.
  • The Positive Minds 6 week course
  • There are many external groups and US groups available for students to participate in that can have a positive impact on their wellbeing.
  • A phone call can be offered as appropriate, if waiting time for appointment is concerning. 

We will also be providing access to ‘Wellbeing Apps’ which will be available on UDO, in the new year.

 

Another student asked: Is anything being done to improve access times for wellbeing service? Feedback from students is that they are being referred and then waiting months for appointments and support that is needed to continue with the course effectively

The university responded:

Wellbeing offer a number of services, the majority of which do not have long waiting times. However, we are concerned about waiting times for Psychological Wellbeing, which provide our therapy service. We monitor waiting times on a weekly basis and we are always looking to improve.

The most significant factor that has impacted on the waiting times for therapy is the steep rise in demand. In the four year period from 2013/14 – 2017/18, we experienced a 113% increase in the number of students who received therapy.

To prevent long waiting times, we try to predict peaks in demand and the increase each year. However, there are a number of factors that have resulted in waiting times – demand out of step with previous trend, therapist terminating their contract and the challenge of recruiting new therapists that meet our high standards.

However, we have recruited 4 new therapists. Two started in December 2018 and two in January 2019. 

The number of lost appointments due to non-attendance is significant in terms of both cost and waiting times. The number of lost appointments in 2017/18 (523) would have provided therapy to an additional 130 students.

We are highlighting with students the negative impact which non-attendance and late cancellations have on waiting times. We are working hard to encourage students to give plenty of notice if unable to attend an appointment, as these appointments can then be allocated to another student on our waiting list. 

We appreciate it is unhelpful to wait for an appointment for more than two weeks but we believe that if we work together we can eliminate our waiting times for therapy.

 

Many thanks to everyone who gave their feedback, it makes a real difference.

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