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

RCPsych eNewsletter - September 2015

College news


Other news





Professor Sir Simon Wessely

Professor Sir Simon Wessely








Dr Khuljit Bhogal: The Art of Recruitment

College news

President's Update

Improving recruitment to psychiatry concerns all of us who have an interest in the future of the profession. Turning things around requires action on many fronts, and it is certainly taking up a lot of my time. For example, I am continuing my World Tour (OK, it’s only a UK tour but World Tour sounds better) of every medical school to talk to the students/Psych Soc – if I haven’t darkened the doors of your local medical school yet, please let me know.


Update on Recruitment Strategy: Dr Tom Brown, Associate Registrar (Recruitment into Psychiatry)

As we enter the final year of the 2011-16 Recruitment Strategy I’d like to take this opportunity to highlight the ongoing work which has been taking place to increase recruitment into Core Psychiatry Training. The strategy has focused on three groups - school students, medicals students, and foundation trainees- and we have made huge progress in each area.


Feature article by Dr Kuljit Bhogal: The Art of Recruitment

Poor recruitment into psychiatry is a familiar issue to most psychiatrists. In her editorial in the July issue of the BJPsych, Helen Henfrey argues that the “role and perception of psychiatry needs rebranding” . Our relationship with the arts may be one of the ways to do this.

This Month's Poll
Poll: your views wanted





Kaleidoscope September 2015
Kaleidoscope: This month's research from the British Journal of Psychiatry.
This Month's Quiz
Test Your Knowledge









Member Job Posts

Jobs: Posts for Members







A Clinician's Brief Guide to the Mental Capacity Act
Books: A Clinician's brief guide to the Mental Capacity Act







Enabling Recovery
Books: The Principles and Practice of Rehabilitation Psychiatry




Handbook of Secure Care
Books: Handbook of Secure Care

This month’s poll: your views wanted


Result of last month’s poll

  • All psychiatrists should undertake a mandatory period of training or volunteering abroad to better understand other health systems?
    40% agreed; 60% disagreed.





This month’s Kaleidoscope column in the British Journal of Psychiatry introduces us to ‘palcohol’, or powdered alcohol. There is nothing fundamentally illegal about a powdered form of (probably) the world’s most beloved and cursed chemical, but it immediately raises interesting questions.




This month’s quiz: "Win a College mug in our monthly quiz"

All questions true or false; full answers will be in September’s Kaleidoscope column in the BJPsych (see above).

  1. Recently licensed 'palcohol', or powdered alcohol, can be consumed by eating or inhaling it.
  2. A recent large (86,000) population gene study has failed to find the commonly described link between mental ill-health and creativity.
  3. Both cognitive decline and structural brain changes are well associated phenomena in psychosis, however the first longitudinal work to follow-up both has shown that they appear to be distinct phenomena.


Result of last month’s Quiz: how well did you do?

  1. A meta-analysis of SSRIs has shown that on the depressed-mood question of the HDRS scale, the active drug is superior to placebo in over 90% of comparisons (compared with less than half the time when the full HDRS scores were used). 24% agreed. True; the authors argue that full scale summed scores are thus insensitive to change.
  2. A large epidemiological study of 36,000 adult Americans has found that almost one fifth will suffer an alcohol use disorder during their lifetime: 65% agreed. False; astonishingly, the figure was almost one third.
  3. Data from the longitudinal cohort suggest that about two-thirds of individuals diagnosed with ADHD as adults had a history consistent with undiagnosed childhood ADHD: 76% agreed. False; the fascinating result was that 90% had not had childhood ADHD, and the authors suggest that adult diagnosed ADHD may, for many, represent a different condition.
Congratulations to Dr Elena Baker-Glenn for winning the first Kaleidoscope Quiz ‘Win a Mug’ Competition.


Posts for College members

  • Chair of Patient Safety Expert Working Group
    The Patient Safety Expert Working Group is responsible for providing advice and guidance on psychiatric risk assessment and management, including issues of patient safety and risk. Applicants should have experience in leading groups and projects and a demonstrable commitment to patient safety. Closing date: 14 September 2015.
  • External Advisers required: training provided
    The Quality Assurance Committee is seeking enthusiastic consultants to join a pool of College accredited external advisors who will form part of visiting teams to Deaneries/Learning Education and Training Boards and individual training providers; they will take part in Annual Review of Competence Progression processes. The College will be running a half day training session on 18 November at 21 Prescot St, London, between 1:30pm and 4pm. Contact:
  • Trainees Online: Call for Authors – Critical Review and Clinical Modules
    We are looking for higher trainees to author eLearning modules covering the Critical Review and Clinical Areas of the MRCPsych syllabus. Closing date: 10 September 2015. Read more...
  • Fellowship opportunities: Joint MRC/RCPsych Research Fellow in Depression
    As well as providing financial support to successful Clinical Research Training Fellows, we will also offer a mentor for the duration of the Fellowship. Closing date:9 September 2015.


RCPsych Awards 2015:

Congratulations to those who have been shortlisted.
We are delighted to announce the shortlists for the RCPsych Awards 2015. These Awards mark the highest level of achievement in psychiatry.


New from RCPsych Publications:


RCPCH: Disability Matters: Changing the Landscape of Disability in the UK

Disability Matters is a free learning resource to help those who work, volunteer or engage with disabled children and young people (from 0 to 25 years) and their families to support them as effectively as they can. It encompasses both physical and intellectual disabilities and is available as both online learning for individuals and face-to-face training for groups. The RCPCH is leading on Disability Matters for their consortium partners, including the Royal College of Psychiatrists.

NHS Enlgand
NHS England: Local Transformation Plans




NHS Commissioning Guide
NHS England: Commissioning Guide





Bipolar disorder: New NICE quality standard





CQC: Annual Report






Time to Change

Discrimination: Time to Change



Borderlines of Psychiatry
International Symposium 2016: Borderlines of Psychiatry

News from other organisations and the NHS

NHS England: New programme to improve young people’s mental health, and improvements to community-based eating disorder services

NHS England has published the Access and Waiting Time Standard for Children and Young People with an Eating Disorder Commissioning Guide and Local Transformation Plans for Children and Young People's Mental Health and Wellbeing Guidance which includes CCG allocations.

  • College response: Significant extra funding for CAMHS and the introduction of an eating disorders access standard offer hope for those young people failed in the past. The President, Professor Sir Simon Wessely said: “The Royal College of Psychiatrists welcomes NHS England’s’ announcement today of a significant funding boost for children and young people’s mental health services. This funding represents a major step forward in improving care, coming as it does after years of both rising demand and cuts which have left services failing young people on a daily basis – as NHS England has, to its credit, acknowledged today.”


Update from NICE:


BUPA UK Foundation announced mental health funding programme

The BUPA UK Foundation has announced that mid-life mental health is the theme of its first funding programme and invites applications from organisations and individuals. It is looking to fund projects that will be delivered within 12 to 18 months, and which focus on one of the following areas: prevention, early intervention, and Integration. Closing date: 4 September 2015.


Care Quality Commission

  • Annual Report for 2014/15 has now been published. The report shows the progress made over the last year in implementing our new approach to inspection. By the end of 2014/15, we had inspected 7,038 providers and locations using our new inspection model, leading to 3,180 ratings.
  • Nine national professional advisors for mental health join CQC: to provide advice and leadership on how we inspect and regulate mental health and learning disability services across England. They will join the Hospitals Directorate and will work with Dr Paul Lelliott, Deputy Chief Inspector of Hospitals (lead for Mental Health).

Time to Change: Work with mental health professionals

People still report high levels of discrimination when they use mental health services. Time to Change is working with the 2gether NHS Foundation Trust and the Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust on a pilot project to learn more about what can be done.


Future events

RCPsych Mental Health App



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