People who experience anxiety and depression can now contact a local NHS support service directly.
Sussex Community NHS Trust’s Time to Talk service offers talking therapies for people who are struggling with psychological issues such as stress, worry and depression.
It is part of a national initiative to bring psychological therapies closer to where people live.
Until now, access to the service needed a referral from a GP but people living across West Sussex can now contact the service directly by phoning their local Time to Talk team.
In Crawley and Horsham the number is 01403 227048.
Ed Brennan, Sussex Community NHS Trust’s general manager, Time to Talk, said: “We are passionate about offering treatments for people who may be reluctant to visit their GP and seek advice and we want to make it as easy as possible for people to contact Time to Talk directly.
“If you are struggling and need our support, we’d urge you to get in touch with our team of therapists so that we can help you move forward with your life as soon as possible.”
Dr Ali Parish, West Sussex-based GP, said: “I’ve seen people really turn their lives around after years of struggling thanks to this fantastic service. The sad thing is some people never pluck up the courage to visit their GP, so this new option, in addition to the GP referral route, is a very positive move.”