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What does personalised care look like for people with mental health needs?

Think Local Act Personal (TLAP_ and National Voices have launched a new resource to describe what personalised, coordinated care and support should look like for people with mental health needs.

'No Assumptions - A Narrative for Personalised, Coordinated Care and Support in Mental Health' describes the critical outcomes and success factors in the care, support and treatment of people who use mental health from their perspective.

The narrative will help NHS and council commissioners and providers of services to organise person-centred care and recovery-oriented support for mental and physical health and to know when they are achieving it.

It was commissioned and endorsed by NHS England, and will be shared with the 13 other national system-leading organisations in the integrated care and support collaborative, including the Department of Health, ADASS, LGA and the health and social care regulators.

No Assumptions has been co-produced with people who have lived experience of mental illness from TLAP's National Co-production Advisory Group, together with organisations including the National Survivor User Network, Mind, Rethink Mental Illness and Certitude. It includes a number of case studies that show how good personalised, coordinated care in mental health services can be achieved around England.

National Clinical Director for mental health Geraldine Strathdee says:"I very much welcome the launch of this new programme, which is a 'must read' for anyone commissioning and delivering mental health services. People with lived experience of mental ill health tell us what fundamentally matters to them, and the type of collaborative, empowering, effective and safe care they want. As we have seen this past year, there is no more powerful advocacy for mental health care in England, than the voice of users telling us about their experiences and how they manage full lives while living with mental health conditions. This resource also provides examples of  'what good looks like' in practice and how services can reach the NICE quality standard for user experience. I very much look forward to hearing more from patient voice to help us realise our new ambition which is to provide integrated physical and mental health care in settings and conditions."

Sarah Norman, joint chair of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) mental health network says: "ADASS fully supports No Assumptions and the aims it has for improving the lives of people with mental health issues. Both the guidelines and case studies will be really useful in helping commissioners, service managers and mental health professionals make sure that services are more responsive to the concerns and aspirations of people with mental health needs."

Geoff Heyes, Policy and Campaigns Manager at Mind, said: "Mind welcomes the publication of these two important documents which illustrate what good quality joined up care looks like for those experiencing mental health problems. We are proud to have been involved in the development of these tools and our engagement with those we represent has allowed us to offer valuable insight into some of the problems people with lived experience encounter with mental health services.

"Too often we hear from people who experience disjointed care across primary, secondary mental and physical health services and social care. Facing multiple assessments with different health professionals can be very disruptive and negatively impact an individual's mental health. Through these publications we hope that service providers and commissioners will be better able to commission high quality, coordinated services in consultation with service users, ensuring their individual needs are taken into consideration."

Think Local Act Personal (TLAP) Director Sam Bennett says: "People using mental health services, their families and carers need to be sure their care will be effective and delivered in a way that meets all their mental and physical health needs in a joined up way. No Assumptions will help those who work in health and care to commission and deliver personalised, coordinated care and support based on what people with lived experience of mental illness say is important to them."

National Voices' Director of Policy Don Redding says: "Through this resource, people who use services are saying they want flexible, responsive care and support which includes peer support and the involvement of users in services; works with them to anticipate and prevent crises; and helps deal with their physical and mental health in an integrated way."

National Coproduction Advisory Group member and TLAP co-chair Clenton Farquharson says: "People are the best integrators of their care and support but they can often feel that the divisions between health and social care negatively impact their experience. It is vital health and social care organisations work together to deliver a seamless, person-centred service directed by the individual and No Assumptions can help with this."

The resource is an extension of the Narrative for Person Centred Coordinated Care launched in 2013. It offers a definition of personalised, coordinated care in mental health, agreed by people who use mental health services and people who work in health and social care; a series of "I" statements expressing what personalised, coordinated care looks and feels like; and case studies of personalised, coordinated care in practice. It complements TLAP's Making it Real programme which encourages care and health organisations to publicly declare how they will work in more person-centred ways.

People using mental health services under the Care Programme Approach have also been included in the first wave of the Integrated Personal Commissioning Programme announced by NHS England in July 2014.

The resource can be downloaded from TLAP's website.

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Last Updated : 29 August 2014. Page Author: Laura Bimpson.