Occupational therapists working in mental health services in the UK are under increasing scrutiny to provide both clinically and cost-effective services. The profession has indicated that a stronger evidence base would help promote the unique contribution of occupational therapy when influencing service managers and government bodies. The paper aims to discuss these issues.
The Royal College of Occupational Therapists (RCOT) and its Specialist Section – Mental Health carried out a survey to gauge recent research capacity among occupational therapists working in mental health services in the UK and to seek their views about how to further increase research capacity and partnerships.
Of the 145 participants approximately half had been involved in research in the past five years, and most had involved research partnerships. A number had successfully applied for funding and about half of the research carried out had been disseminated. The participants felt that methods to increase research capacity and partnerships should continue to include improving research leadership and networks; promoting research skills through formal studies and increasing research dissemination.
A variety of methods will continue to be required to expand the evidence base. RCOT and its Specialist Sections continue to have an important role developing research capacity and partnerships.
Morris, K. and Smyth, G. (2017), "A survey of research capacity and partnerships among mental health occupational therapists in the UK", Mental Health Review Journal, Vol. 22 No. 2, pp. 136-147. https://doi.org/10.1108/MHRJ-12-2016-0024
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