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

Service User Experience in Adult Mental Health: NICE Guidance on Improving the Experience of Care for People Using Adult NHS Mental Health Services

National Collaborating Centre for Mental Health (NCCMH)

Price: £40.00

College members' price: £36.00

Published: Jun 2012

Format: Paperback + free CD-ROM

Number of pages: 234

ISBN: 9781908020451

Service User Experience in Adult Mental Health: NICE Guidance on Improving the Experience of Care for People Using Adult NHS Mental Health Services

This NICE guidance is the first of its kind to assess the evidence for improving service users’ experience of health services. A number of recent government initiatives have highlighted the importance of taking service users’ views and experiences of UK healthcare services into account, in order to improve the quality of their care - yet more remains to be done. 


This is particularly the case for users of mental health services, many of whom have high levels of contact with services, can experience stigma and can be detained under the Mental Health Act. With almost a quarter of adults in England having a diagnosis of a mental health problem, improving their experience of care is of paramount importance.


This book examines the evidence for and gives recommendations on how to improve the quality of mental health services provided in seven main areas: access to community care, assessment (non-acute), community care; assessment and referral in crisis; hospital care; discharge and transfer of care; and detention under the Mental Health Act. It also makes recommendation across the whole of the care pathway, with a particular focus on improving the relationship between the mental health service user and healthcare professional.


The book details the methodology developed for this unique piece of guidance. An accompanying free CD-ROM contains all the data used as evidence.


  • Now the only place to obtain this NICE guidance in print.


Readership: The guidance is intended for all mental health professionals working in secondary care, commissioners and service providers.


List of the other NICE mental health guidelines

NICE Mental Health Guidelines

These guidelines from NICE set out clear recommendations, based on the best available evidence, for health care professionals on how to work with and implement physical, psychological and service-level interventions for people with various mental health conditions.

The book contains the full guidelines that cannot be obtained in print anywhere else. It brings together all of the evidence that led to the recommendations made, detailed explanations of the methodology behind their preparation, plus an overview of the condition covering detection, diagnosis and assessment, and the full range of treatment and care approaches.

The accompanying free CD-ROM contains all the data used as evidence, including:

  • Included and excluded studies.
  • Profile tables that summarise both the quality of the evidence and the results of the evidence synthesis.
  • All meta-analytical data, presented as forest plots.
  • Detailed information about how to use and interpret forest plots.


  1. Preface
  2. Introduction to service user experience
  3. Method used to develop this guidance
  4. Review protocol and sources of evidence for the review of key problems associated with experience of care
  5. Access to community care
  6. Assessment (non-acute)
  7. Community care
  8. Assessment and referral in crisis (not under the Mental Health Act)
  9. Hospital care
  10. Discharge and transfer of care
  11. Detention under the Mental Health Act
  12. Interventions to improve service user experience
  13. Summary of recommendations
  14. Appendices
  15. References
  16. Abbreviations
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