The purpose of this paper is to draw attention to commissioning and service structures enabling implementation of evidence-based cost-effective care as illustrated by the “1419” young people’s service treating mild to moderate severity mental health difficulties in teenagers old 14 to 19 years. The authors describe relevant local contextual factors: “relational commissioning”, demand capacity planning and a receptive and safe clinical context.
The authors used a participant observer qualitative research design to describe commissioning and service design. Treatment outcomes were analysed using a quantitative design and found significant improvement in service user mental health and daily function. These results will be reported elsewhere.
The dynamics and structures described here enabled clear shared goals between service user, service purchaser, service provider and service partners. The goals and design of the service were not static and were subject to ongoing development using routine outcome measures and conversations between referrers, commissioners, service users and within the team about what was and was not working.
The methods are limited by the lack of a prospective systematic evaluation of the implementation process and by the time limitations of the service.
Implementation of whole system change such as that envisioned by Children and Young People’s Improving Access to Psychological Therapies requires consideration of local context and process of implementation. The authors suggest key factors: consideration of “relational commissioning” with purchasers, providers and service users designing services together; case-level collaboration between services and partner agencies; smaller child and adolescent mental health teams eliminating competing task demands, permitting speed of action, providing psychological safety for staff, promoting shared goals and innovation; rigorous demand/capacity planning to inform funding.
The failings of child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS) are detailed in the Department of Health report “Future in mind: promoting, protecting and improving our children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing” (2015). The aims of the report are contingent on the ability of local health providers to implement its recommendations. The authors provide a theoretical approach to enable this implementation.
To date there are no published papers addressing the key characteristics enabling implementation of evidence-based practice within CAMHS. The unique experience in forming the“1419” service has important implications nationally and brings together evidence of an effective service within a theoretical underpinned context.
Humphrey, A., Eastwood, L., Atkins, H., Vainre, M. and Lea-Cox, C. (2016), "An exemplar of GP commissioning and child and adolescent mental health service partnership: Cambridge 1419 young people’s service", Journal of Integrated Care, Vol. 24 No. 1, pp. 26-37. https://doi.org/10.1108/JICA-08-2015-0033Download as .RIS
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