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

RCPsych eNewsletter - March 2015

College news


Other news



Independent Commission launched to review the provision of inpatient psychiatric care for adults - call for evidence

College news


Independent Commission launched to review the provision of inpatient psychiatric care for adults - call for evidence

Launched on 4 February, this independent Commission is chaired by Lord Nigel Crisp, former Chief Executive of the NHS in England and Permanent Secretary of the Department of Health. It has been established by the Royal College of Psychiatrists to respond to widespread concerns about the provision of inpatient psychiatric care for adults in many parts of England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Call for Evidence. The Commissioners would like to hear from patients, carers, staff, commissioners, charities, academics, social workers and anyone else who has knowledge or experience of acute inpatient care in England, Wales or Northern Ireland. The Commission is interested to hear about innovative solutions to bed pressures which are already being put into practice. Closing date: 18 March 2015.


College Evening Event: ‘What is wrong with Forensic Psychiatry?’
College Evening Event: ‘What is wrong with Forensic Psychiatry?’






Dr Adrian James
The Psychiatrist At Westminster: Dr Adrian James






Research of the month: In your College journals this month






New Exams Centres in Singapore and India


New exams centres in Singapore and India







Public Education video on depression


Public Education video on depression







Dr Peter Hughes


Podcast: Ebola in Sierra Leone - Dr Peter Hughes



  • College Evening Event
    ‘What is wrong with Forensic Psychiatry?’

    Lecture by Dr Trevor Turner, with reply from Professor Tom Fahy: 6.30pm on 25 March 2015 at 21 Prescot Street. Read more...


  • The Psychiatrist At Westminster: Dr Adrian James

    “I am coming to the end of my five year term as Chair of the Westminster Parliamentary Liaison Committee.  I have been asked to reflect on the good, the bad and the ugly of my experience and hope that my reflections will stimulate interest in applying for this important and interesting role, which will be advertised soon.” Read more...


  • RCPsych in the news
    • RCPsych’s statement on the Medical Innovation Bill – Third Reading in the House of Lords. Read more...

    • Alcohol consumption and mortality study.






  • This month's quiz

    Things we have learnt: please choose whether the following are true or false...

    Result of last month’s quiz: Things we learnt in 2014: Clinical Assessment

    1. Neuropsychological work indicates there are probably three subtypes of ADHD, each with different clinical trajectories: 67%
    2. A ‘praecox feeling’ sometimes used by psychiatrists to describe an ‘inaccessibility’ of rapport in those with psychoses remains a useful informal guide of individuals’ social functioning: 44%
    3. In 2014 a causal link between Vitamin D deficiency and depression was finally established: 36%
    4. In offenders with mental illness who have been convicted of violent crime, intensity of hallucinations has been the symptom most strongly linked with subsequent violence: 35%
    5. Individual demographic factors are more important than local environmental ones in predicting relapse in psychosis: 40%

    Answers: 1 and 5 are both true. 2) has been shown to be inaccurate as a guide and without clear scientific merit. 3) an association has been shown, but this is not clearly causal. 4) no such association has been shown with hallucinations, but it has been shown for persecutory delusions.


  • Research of the month: In your College journals this month

    Round-up by Derek K Tracy, Dan W Joyce, Sukhwinder S Shergill. Read more…


  • New exams centres in Singapore and India

    The Royal College of Psychiatrists and National Institute of Mental Health & Neurosciences are pleased to announce that the MRCPsych Written Papers will be held through the British Council in Bangalore from July 2015.The first examination to be held in Bangalore will be the MRCPsych Paper A examination on 7 July 2015. The opening date for applications is 18 May 2015 and the closing date for applications is the 05 June 2015.

    We are also pleased to announce that we will be opening a new exams centre in Singapore in April 2015. MRCPsych written papers A & B will be run at the British Council of Singapore in order to accommodate candidates in South East Asia. More information to follow soon.



  • End of free access to CPD Online

    Free access to CPD Online for Trainees and Affiliates ends on 28 February 2015. Read more...



  • Pathfinder Fellowship Inaugural Dinner 2015: Dr Subodh Dave, Associate Dean for Trainee Support

    On 5 February the Pathfinder Fellows were invited to the Inaugural Dinner of the Fellowship at the new premises of the Royal College of Psychiatrists.


  • New RCPsych Videos

    This month’s research round up comes courtesy of your College's journals

    • Public Education video on depression: This three minute animation explores what it feels like to be depressed, the symptoms of depression, and what help you can get if you are feeling depressed. The film was produced by the RCPsych Public Engagement Committee in conjunction with Damn Fine Media.

    • Why it matters? Produced by UCL PsychSoc, medical students interview non-psychiatrists about the extent of psychiatry involved in each of their specialties.


  • Iranian Diaspora

    Dr Cyrus Abbasian is initiating a representation on Iranian origin psychiatrists. If you would be interested in joining this initiavitive, please email Dr Abbasian directly. 


  • Clinical Excellence Awards 2015

    Discussions about the 2015 round are ongoing. Anyone wishing to apply should complete the forms, which can be found on the College’s website. Closing date: 16 March 2015.


  • Podcast

    Ebola in Sierra Leone: Dr Peter Hughes, in conversation with Dr Howard Ryland, reports on his recent role and experiences in Sierra Leone.



New Report: ‘Transforming Care – Next Steps'


New Report: ‘Transforming Care – Next Steps'








NHS Change Day


NHS Change Day








National Quality Board (NQB): engagement exercise


The Reading Agency: Reading Well Books on Prescription to help people with dementia








Support when facing threats to your job


The MQ Fellows Programme




News from other organisations and the NHS



NHS England
  • Guidance on new mental health standards published - NHS England has set out guidance for how new access and waiting time standards for mental health services are to be introduced.
  • New Report: ‘Transforming Care – Next Steps’ - NHS England, along with other national partners, has published a report that sets out the next steps to transform services for people with learning disabilities and/or autism. 
  • Consultation about how to prioritise which specialised services and treatments to invest in - NHS England directly commissions around 145 specialised services. In order to ensure the maximum number of patients benefit from new innovative treatments coming on stream, choices need to be made about which of these to fund. In carrying out a public consultation, NHS England will ensure the principles and process for making these decisions are well informed, evidence-led and in line with the expectations of patients and the public. The consultation will last for 90 days from 27 January 2015.


Transparency of Payments to Healthcare Professionals

A European directive coming into force this year, whereby pharmaceutical companies need to disclose payments made to individual healthcare professionals for various things (speaking at & chairing meetings; advisory board participation; sponsorship in relation to attendance at meetings; etc). It is hoped this move to greater transparency will provide a better platform for ensuring the relationship between industry and the healthcare profession is conducted in an appropriate way, and so avoid some of the criticisms of yesteryear.


Mental health: hundreds forced to travel long distances for acute care

More than 400 adults with acute mental health problems are being forced to seek treatment at hospitals more than 30 miles from their homes, figures show, prompting ministers to order a review. The figures for England, compiled by the NHS's Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC), show that in some cases patients from Derbyshire are being treated in south Devon and others from south Devon are being treated in Birmingham.


NHS Change Day

A grassroots movement involving thousands of health and care workers, patients, carers, volunteers and members of the public to take action and make changes that improve health and social care. This year’s NHS Change Day is on Wednesday 11 March.


Care Quality Commission


Update from NICE

Psychosis and schizophrenia in adults - This quality standard covers the treatment and management of psychosis and schizophrenia in adults with onset before the age of 60 years in primary, secondary and community care. It will not cover adults with transient psychotic symptoms.


GMC supports doctors treating dementia patients

Dementia and mental health issues are the latest focus of the GMC’s online resource which supports doctors treating older patients. New updates to the resource include a ‘mythbusters’ leaflet produced by the GMC from Professor Alistair Burns CBE, NHS England’s National Clinical Director for Dementia.


The Reading Agency: Reading Well Books on Prescription to help people with dementia

Public libraries in England have launched the latest Reading Well Books on Prescription scheme to support people with dementia and their carers. This is part of a national library strategy to support the development of dementia-friendly communities and build understanding and awareness of the condition.


Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh

  • Fellowship for Research into Depressive Illness: John, Margaret, Alfred & Stewart Sim Fellowship -  Applicants may request funding for up to three years, with a total cost of up to £300,000, including on-costs and essential research expenses. 
  • Grants for Research into Mental Disorders: Marion B M Lindsay Bequest and the Miss Janet Reid Trust - These grants are for research into any aspects of mental disorder. Awards of up to £2,000 are available.

The closing date: 29 May 2015.


MQ Transforming Mental Health

The MQ Fellows Programme supports the most promising early career scientists and clinicians who are addressing challenging questions that will contribute to transformative advances in mental health research. This year, the application process has 3 stages, and the initial stage is a Statement of Intent. The deadline: 16 April 2015.



International Congress: Birmingham: 29 June – 2 July 2015




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