Date Published: 21 June 2006

Ten steps to modernise mental health services in the UK

Health News from the United Kingdom (UK).

A new drive to modernise mental health services was launched today by UK Health Minister Rosie Winterton.

She published a document outlining ten key changes that mental health providers should make to improve quality of care for patients and drive better service efficiency.

These changes include:

  • more home treatment for service users;
  • improving access to screening and assessment for people with suspected mental health problems;
  • avoiding unnecessary contact for service users and providing contact in the right setting.

Based on existing best practice, all ten changes have been tried and tested around the country.

The difference they have made to service users, to staff and to services themselves have been measured and results are presented in case studies collected from local mental health services across the country. The document aims to show mental health professionals that by following this guidance, they can make a real difference to how they provide services for patients.

Launching the document, which has been produced by the Care Services Improvement Partnership (CSIP) for the Department of Health, Rosie Winterton said:

" We know that patients want community-based health services, greater control and a more personalised service. Unprecedented levels of investment in mental health services have already resulted in real benefits for patients. Now we must redouble our efforts to provide more streamlined, effective care, tailored to meet the needs of individual patients.

_ I am delighted to launch the 10 High Impact Changes for Mental Health Services and thank CSIP for all their work in making this possible. Based on real examples of success, the initiative offers practical changes that professionals can make to improve service delivery, the treatment and experience of patients, as well as the moral of staff.

_ Offering real choice, improving access and reducing social exclusion requires service reform. Our challenge is to continue to build on the successes that we have achieved. The 10 High Impact Changes initiative confirms that making a real difference is possible."

Commenting on the initiative, CSIP author Jackie Ardley said:

" The High Impact Changes success comes from and is dependent on engagement and work with staff and service users in the local health and social care communities who implement them."

Source(s): UK Dept. Health

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