Primary care mental health services (PCMHS) are services usually provided through your GP practice. You might be referred into primary care mental health services if you are feeling low, vulnerable or anxious.
Brief description of the project
Primary Care Mental Health Services (PCMHS) are usually provided through GP practices to people who are feeling low, vulnerable or anxious. There are three different PCMHS in Leeds:
- Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT)
- Primary Care Mental Health Liaison Service
- Perinatal Mental Health
In April 2018, the three local Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) merged into NHS Leeds CCG. As one CCG, we will commission a single primary care mental health service for Leeds from 1 October 2019. We think this will make services easier to understand and access. We wanted to know what people think about PCMHS in Leeds.
Who did we speak to?
We received feedback from 1105 current and previous service users, carers, staff working in PCMHS, members of the public, and other stakeholders.
What and how did we ask?
We used surveys, held focus groups, and drop-in sessions to gather people’s thoughts and experiences of PCMHS in Leeds.
What did people tell us?
People had mixed views about the service they received. They told us that:
- There needs to be more information about mental health services available in Leeds and how people can access them
- The waiting times for assessment and therapeutic interventions are too long
- The referral process and criteria are unclear and confusing
- The service needs to be more inclusive of different community groups’ needs
- The service needs to be more consistent and patient-centred
What did we do?
We will use people’s feedback to develop the new service. The new service will:
- Provide information about the new PCMHS in an accessible format for all communities
- The waiting times for accessing the service will be measured around the national targets and the payment for services will be linked to meeting the expected targets
- Outline simple referral processes
- Provide online and telephone referrals and offer evening and weekend appointments
- Monitor and address any under-representation in the new service, such as older people and men
- Provide a person-centred service, tailored to individual needs.
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