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

RCPsych publishes results of Health and Social Care Bill survey

Embargoed until 11 October 2011

Only 1 in 10 psychiatrists believe that the reforms proposed in the government’s Health and Social Care Bill will lead to better patient care, according to a snapshot survey carried out by the Royal College of Psychiatrists (RCPsych).

The survey, which had 1,890 respondents, also found that:

  • 84% believe that the RCPsych should call for the Bill to be withdrawn
  • 93% were not reassured by the Government’s response to the recent Listening Exercise
  • 85% believe that the current reforms will not deliver cost-effective care
  • 78% believe that the current reforms will not improve relationships between GPs and psychiatrists

Professor Sue Bailey, President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, said: "Our findings are extremely worrying. Nine out of 10 of the psychiatrists who responded do not think that the current reforms will lead to better patient care. Our mental health service users are a particularly vulnerable group, who already experience considerable health inequalities. History tells us that in times of economic restraint, when combined with major reform, those with mental health problems fare the worst.

"Perhaps most significantly, 84% of our members have expressed the view that the Bill should be withdrawn. At this stage of the Bill’s passage, and on behalf of our members, I urgently call on the House of Lords to set up a health select committee to interrogate and debate more fully the implications of these reforms for our patients."

Professor Bailey continued: "In the meantime psychiatrists, as doctors, are continuously working with our GP colleagues to ensure we deliver the best care and treatment for patients and their families."

The results of the RCPsych survey are published a day after the results of a similar snapshot survey were published by the Royal College of General Practitioners.

For further information, please contact:
Sarah Nevins
Press & Social Media Officer
Telephone: 020 3701 2543
Claire McLoughlin
Media & Communications Manager 
Telephone: 020 3701 2544
Out of hours contact number: 07860 755896



The snapshot survey was emailed to 9,614 members of the Royal College of Psychiatrists currently living and working in England. 1,890 responses were received – a response rate of 20%.


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