The state of care in mental health services 2014 to 2017: findings from CQC's programme of comprehensive inspections of specialist mental health services

Care Quality Commission
Publication year:
Place of publication:
Newcastle upon Tyne

The report combines evidence from inspection reports of mental health services published up to 31 May 2017 and analysis of data to examine the quality of mental health care in England. It draws on inspections of core services provided by 54 mental health NHS trusts and 218 independent mental health services, covering inpatient mental health and community mental health and crisis services. The report details the findings across six groups: children and young people’s services; services for working age adults; older people’s services; mental health crisis care; services for people with a learning disability or autism; and forensic services. The analysis found that 74 per cent of core services provided by NHS trusts and 76 per cent among independent services were rated good or outstanding. However, 39 per cent of NHS trusts and 23 per cent of independent services required improvement. Areas of concern identified include: concerns about the high numbers of people in ‘locked rehabilitation wards’; great variation in how frequently staff use restrictive practices and physical restraint to deescalate challenging behaviour; the impact of staffing shortages accompanied by a growing demand for mental health care; concerns about safety, including the poor physical environment of mental health wards, staffing levels and management of medicines; and commissioning of crisis care services. The report also highlights examples of good practice and of mental health services that showed improvements following re-inspection. (Edited publisher abstract)

Subject terms:
community mental health services, mental health services, hospitals, mental health care, inspection, performance evaluation, acute psychiatric care, secure units, forensic psychiatry, child and adolescent mental health services, quality assurance;
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