Results from the NHS England 2015 Patient Experience Community Mental Health Survey have been published, sharing the experiences of patients aged 18 years or older who received specialist care or treatment for a mental health condition between September and November 2014.
Responses were received from over 13,000 patients with a national response rate of 29%.
The survey found that overall patient experience of community mental health services decreased between 2014-15 and 2015-16, down from 75.8 out of 100 to 74.8 out of 100.
Satisfaction was found to be lower in the ‘better information, more choice’ category. This consists of five survey questions, and assesses whether NHS mental health services involved patients as much as they wanted to be involved in agreeing what care they would receive and their medication, taking their personal circumstances into account. It also assesses whether NHS mental health services involved patients in deciding what treatments or therapies to use.
Four of the five scored questions in this category have significantly decreased:
- Fewer patients say they agreed with NHS mental health services what care they would receive (score decreasing from 60.7 to 59.5)
- Fewer patients felt involved as much as they wanted to be in agreeing their care (score decreasing from 75.5 to 74.3)
- Fewer patients felt their care took their personal circumstances into account (score decreasing from 77.6 to 76.2).
- Fewer patients say they were involved as much as they wanted to be in deciding which medicines to receive (score decreasing from 70.4 to 69.2)
Also, in the ‘building closer relationships’ category fewer patients say they were given enough time to discuss their needs and treatment (score decreasing from 78.3 to 75.3); while fewer patients feel that NHS mental health services understood how their mental health needs affected other areas of their life (score decreasing from 73.1 to 70.8).
NHS England has also published a Diagnostic Tool, designed to help NHS managers and the general public understand what feeds in to the overall scores and how scores vary across individual NHS organisations.
The full report, and the diagnostic tool, can be accessed here.