Greater Manchester Specialist Support Team (GMSST) is a Mersey Care community service based in Eccles, developed as part of the national Transforming Care programme. This team has been created to ensure:

  • Better access to relevant treatment closer to home and in the community
  • Fewer people with a learning disability having contact with the criminal justice system
  • Fewer people with learning disability and forensic risks living in hospital setting
  • Increased capacity to provide effective support for people with learning disabilities and forensic risks in community settings
  • When a person does require an admission to hospital their discharge planning will be coordinated and focussed from the point of admission

GMSST supports people aged 16 upwards with Learning Disabilities and / or Autism, who have complex needs associated with challenging or offending behaviour. We are a multi-disciplinary team, meaning we have a range of specialist clinical staff, therapists, social workers and others. We offer short term, high impact interventions and assessments.

We aim to reduce placement breakdown, unnecessary hospital admissions or future offending. GMSST also supports people who are currently in hospital or approaching release from prison, ensuring reasonable adjustments are made to care and support and facilitating discharge planning and transition back to the community at the earliest opportunity.

We support individuals and services across Greater Manchester and work closely with all agencies involved with the person at risk. This includes families and carers.

We are part of Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust’s Secure Care Division. The service has a wide range of health and social care professionals and experts by experience

You may hear the abbreviation MDT when you speak to us. A multi disciplinary team refers to the groups of specialists such as:


Psychologists will try to work out why you are doing things that are concerning or harmful to you or other people. Psychologists work by talking to you and people who know you so that we can understand what your needs are. We can then suggest what you and others can do to help you get the most out of your life.

Speech and language therapists:

Speech and Language Therapy will work with you to understand your communication differences and how these might be contributing to your current risks or problems. Speech Therapy will also work with you, the people around you and your environment so you can communicate your needs as affectively as possible.


Nurses conduct important work to ensure improvement or maintain general wellbeing. They offer support and advice in consultation sessions to reduce barriers for individuals with learning disabilities and/or autism. Nurses support people with forensic history and those in contact with the criminal justice system. They work collaboratively with services across Greater Manchester to prevent placement breakdown and speed up discharge from hospital in line with the transforming care agenda. They complete specialist assessments that can’t be met by mainstream services. They facilitate training to support service development and meet the complex needs of people they work with. The nursing team also work closely with support workers to facilitate an intensive support package for those individuals with enhanced needs, for a short period of time.

Occupational therapists:

"Occupation" refers to activities such as self-care, work, leisure, and sleep. Occupational Therapists work alongside individuals, their family and other services to identify strengths and overcome any challenges, by addressing areas such as: Motivation, Roles and responsibilities, routine, day-to-day skills, making changes to the environment and aspirations – working together towards goals. We offer advice and consultation sessions or Direct Intervention, training to care providers, assessments surrounding functional skills baseline, exploring ability to engage with meaningful activities. We also offer environmental assessment, exploring how sensory processing difficulties may be impacting in day-to-day activities, and ways to overcome this, and contributing to care plans.

Social workers:

Social workers will support your current social worker in ensuring that you are safe, protected from harm and that your Human Rights are being met. This could involve supporting your hospital discharge, supporting your right to make decisions, supporting your right to housing support or ensuring your access to advocacy.

Support workers:

Support workers work with your existing staff in supporting you to carry out your every day living while supporting you to live more independently by developing your life skills. This could involve helping you with obtaining employment, cooking, finances, shopping.


Greater Manchester

Floor 7

2 City Approach

Albert Street


M30 0BL

Tel: 01254 821112 / 01254 821459