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The Royal College of Psychiatrists Improving the lives of people with mental illness

Policy and Parliamentary

Introduction to the Policy Unit

Policy and ParliamentaryThe College Policy Unit coordinates, develops and advises on issues affecting, mental health policy and psychiatric practice. It is based in the RCPsych headquarters in London and is part of the Communications and Policy Department.

The unit works closely with College members to represent the expertise of the psychiatric profession both internally and to a range of external audiences.

We aim to bring about change for the benefit of those affected by mental illness by producing expert reports and advice, influencing key organisations and decision makers, and raising the profile of mental health and the positive impact of psychiatrists.

The unit is also closely involved with the Parliamentary and Public Affairs work of the College and works with government departments, patients and carers, parliamentarians and many professional bodies, health and social care charities and coalitions. 'Working in coalition with others' gives details of the organisations we work with.

Main areas of work:

The members of the Policy Unit are:

Lucy Thorpe Head of Policy ext 2545
Ben Scanlon Research Fellow ext 2537
Masood Khan Policy Analyst ext 2546
Greg Smith Policy Analyst ext 2540
Holly Taggart Policy Analyst ext 2553
Helen Phillips Senior Administrator ext 2541
Thomas Rutherfoord Trainee Administrator ext 2536

Jonathan Blay is the Public Affairs Manager and can be contacted on 020 3701 2549 or email:


The College switchboard number is 0207 235 2351



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The Joint Commissioning Panel for Mental Health is a new collaboration between 17 leading organisations with an interest in mental health and learning disabilities.

The JCP-MH publishes best practice guidance on the key values and principles for effective mental health commissioning.