Community services: what do we know about quality?

Community services:  what do we know about quality? | The Health Foundation | Nuffield Trust 

community
Image source: http://www.qualitywatch.org.uk

This QualityWatch report looks at trends in routinely collected national quality measures in 18 community trusts in England.  The report finds that a lack of routinely reported data and the absence of appropriate indicators present challenges to monitoring quality in this area.

Some of the key findings of the report were:

  • Care in community trusts was predominantly delivered by professionally qualified clinical staff such as community health nurses, allied health professionals and community health visitors.
  • These staff were roughly as satisfied with their jobs as staff in all NHS trusts, although they were less likely to recommend their trust as a place to work.
  • The median waiting time for an outpatient appointment was three days longer in the community than across all trusts in England.
  • Patients using services offered by community trusts would generally
    recommend them to a friend and were less likely to experience harm
    compared to those using services provided by non-community trusts.

Full report: Community services: what do we know about quality?

Related Nuffiled Trust blog: Why is it so hard to measure quality in community services?

Advertisements

Community mental health survey 2017

Latest survey from Care Quality Commission (CQC) looks at the experiences of people receiving community mental health services

question-2736480_1920

A survey of over 12,000 people who received care or treatment for a mental health condition found around two-thirds of respondents reported a positive experience of overall care.

The vast majority of respondents said that they knew how to contact the person in charge of their care if they had concerns. Higher proportion of respondents this year also knew who to contact out of hours if they were experiencing a crisis.

However, concerns remain about the quality of care some people experience when using community mental health services. There has been little notable improvement in survey results in the last year in the majority of areas.

The CQC believe the results suggest scope for further improvements in a number of areas including: crisis care, access and coordination of care, involvement in care, monitoring the effects of medication and receiving additional support.

Further detail via Care Quality Commission

Full analysis: 2017 Community Mental Health Survey Statistical release

Related:  CQC Report Finds ‘Major Issues’ Surrounding Access To Mental Health Care

Reducing delayed transfers of care over winter

NHS Improvement has written to the chief executives of all trusts providing community services setting out actions they must implement to reduce delayed transfers of care over winter. | NHS Improvement | HSJ

snow-2616580_1920.jpg

NHS Improvement  chief executive Jim Mackey has said trusts must help improve delayed discharges over winter and listed six actions they need to carry out in the next six months:

  1. Facilitate the sharing of patient data with acute and social care partners and from 7 November ensure daily situation reports are completed “to enable better understanding of community services at a national level”.
  2. Jointly assess discharge pathways with local partners including “being an active participant in the local acute provider’s discharge and hosting operational discussions daily where necessary to discharge patients in community settings”.
  3. Develop “discharges hubs” over the next six months and beyond, designed to be a single point of access for patients moving between acute and community services.
  4. Ensure a “robust patient choice policy” is implemented.
  5. Clarify to partner organisations what services the trust offers to patients.
  6. Ensure collection of patient flow data and data on plans to improve patient flow.

Full detail is given by NHS Improvement who have produced the following  report to help improve flow into and out of community health services:

Flow in providers of community health services: good practice guidance

Related HSJ article: Trust chiefs given new instructions to tackle winter DTOCs

Adult and older adult mental health services 2012-2016

Adult and older adult mental health services 2012-2016: An analysis of Mental Health NHS Benchmarking Network data for England and Wales | Centre for Mental Health

centre for mental health
Image source: http://www.centreformentalhealth.org.uk

The number of acute inpatient beds for adults with mental health problems in England and Wales fell by 15% between 2012/13 and 2015/16 while specialist community mental health services also reduced by about 6%, according to a new briefing published today by Centre for Mental Health.

The briefing, Adult and older adult mental health services 2012-2016, analyses data collected by the NHS Benchmarking Network since 2012/13 up to the publication of the Five Year Forward View for Mental Health.

The briefing finds that while psychiatric acute inpatient beds for adults fell by 15% between 2012 and 2016, and staffing levels fell by 20%, the number of people admitted and the time they stayed in hospital did not change. This means that bed occupancy levels have risen to an average of 94%.

During the same time, community mental health service provision fell slightly: the number of people on community team caseloads reduced by 6%, staffing levels fell by 4% and contacts reduced by 7%. By contrast access to psychological therapies rose rapidly, reaching some 900,000 people a year by 2015/16.

Full report:  Adult and older adult mental health services 2012-2016 

 

Pharmacy: a way forward for public health

This document sets out a range of opportunities for pharmacy teams working in communities, and through their daily interactions with patients and the public, to play an important role in protecting and improving the health of the nation. | Public Health England

1797160106_90adb69d4d_z
Image source: Corbin Keech – Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Community pharmacy teams play a pivotal role as a community and health asset in communities. Making healthy choices such as stopping smoking, improving diet and nutrition, increasing physical activity, losing weight and reducing alcohol consumption through pharmacy teams could make a significant contribution to reducing the risk of disease, improving health outcomes for those with long term conditions, reducing premature death and improving mental wellbeing.

This document provides a menu of interventions that could be delivered by pharmacy teams in the primary and community sectors to improve the health and wellbeing of the nation.

Full document: Pharmacy: A way forward for public health opportunities for action through pharmacy for public health.

Community hospitals and their services

The National Institute for Health Research has published Community hospitals and their services in the NHS: identifying transferable learning from international developments, scoping review, systematic review, country reports and case studies.

This study set out to understand better the role of different models of community hospital provision within the wider health economy and learn from experiences of other countries in order to inform the future development of community hospitals in England.

It concludes that at a time when emphasis is being placed on integrated and community-based care, community hospitals have the potential to assume a more strategic role in health-care delivery locally, providing care closer to people’s homes.

Related: Community hospitals: a traditional solution to help today’s NHS? | HSJ

Being mindful of mental health: The role of local government in mental health and wellbeing

This report explores how councils influence the mental wellbeing of our communities and how council services, from social care to parks to open spaces to education to housing, help to make up the fabric of mental health support for the people in our communities | LGA

being20mindful2020of20mental20health20-20the20role20of20local20government20in20mental20health20and20wellbeing2028thumbs29
Image source: LGA

This report explores how councils influence the mental wellbeing of our communities and how council services, from social care to parks to open spaces to education to housing, help to make up the fabric of mental health support for the people in our communities. Many of our partner organisations have kindly contributed their view of the role of local government in mental health.

The World Health Organisation describes mental health as ‘a state of wellbeing in which every individual realises his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community’. Good mental health is essential for a healthy and prosperous society. However, it is easy to focus on what happens when a person becomes mentally ill, and how the health service intervenes, rather than how to keep our communities mentally well in the first place, preventing mental health issues arising, intervening early if problems do start surfacing, and helping people manage their lives going forward. This is where councils play a fundamental role in the mental health and wellbeing of the population.