QNPMHS publications and resources

Below you can find a range of resources which explore the work of the Quality Network for Prison Mental Health Services and good practices within prisons.

These standards have been developed in consultation with individuals from member services of the Quality Network for Prison Mental Health Services (QNPMHS) programme, patient representatives and other experts (please see appendix 1 for a full list of acknowledgements).

  1. Mapping exercise

    The first stage of this process was to review the existing QNPMHS Standards for Prison Mental Health Services – 5th Edition (2021) to identify gaps, remove repetition and improve measurability. The second stage involved mapping these standards against the Royal College of Psychiatrists Standards for Community Mental Health Services – 4th Edition (2022). The purpose of this stage was to identify published community mental health services standards that were applicable to Prison services.

  2. Literature review

    A literature review and review of key documents was carried out (see reference list).

  3. Electronic consultation

    In December 2022, a survey was sent electronically to all QNPMHS member services and the Advisory Group to gather feedback on where changes to the fifth edition of the standards were needed. This survey offered the opportunity to provide feedback on the clarity and measurability of the standards, which standards required removal/altering and which standards were missing.

  4. Standards consultation events

    During the QNPMHS Advisory Group meeting on 06 February 2023, the draft of the revised standards, based on the feedback received during the e-consultation, was shared for feedback and comments. This involved making changes to the draft standards and removing any standard that was no longer required.

    On 18 April 2023, QNPMHS hosted a virtual standards consultation event. The event was attended by staff from Prison services and involved a brief introductory presentation on the process of developing the standards. This was followed by group discussions to decide on any changes to the revised standards and whether any further standards needed to be removed.

  5. Categorisation of standards

    All criteria are rated as Type 1, 2 and 3.

    Type 1: Essential standards. Failure to meet these would result in a significant threat to patient safety, rights or dignity and/or would breach the law. These standards also include the fundamentals of care, including the provision of evidence-based care and treatment.

    Type 2: Expected standards that all services should meet.

    Type 3: Desirable standards that high-performing services should meet.

  6. Sustainability principles

The standards have been mapped against the College’s sustainability principles.

Services that meet 90% or more of the standards relevant to Sustainability Principles (marked with the green leaf logo) will be awarded a Sustainable Service Accreditation certification in recognition of the provision of a sustainable mental health service.

Our annual reports summarise findings from the review visits that are conducted over each year.

They outline the current climate within prison mental health nationally, identifying best practice as well as the key areas of challenge experienced by participating services.

Previous editions can be found on Knowledge Hub.

If you have an article you would like to us to feature – or have anything to advertise – please email prisonnetwork@rcpsych.ac.uk.

Creative writing booklet

The first time ever the Quality Networks for Forensic and Prison Mental Health Services launched a creative writing competition for patients. We received some fantastic entries and have showcased all the entries in this special edition creative writing booklet:

We have moved our email discussion groups onto a new, free to join, online forum called knowledge hub. All our members are invited to join the QNPMHS discussion forum on knowledge hub, which will allow you to:

  • Share best practice and quality improvement initiatives
  • Seek advice and connect with other members
  • Discuss current issues and policies
  • Share policies, procedures and guidelines
  • Advertise and view upcoming events and conferences

To join knowledge hub, please email ‘join knowledge hub’ to prisonnetwork@rcpsych.ac.uk.

Planning effective mental healthcare in prisons using the Care Programme Approach and the Community Mental Health Framework

This work stemmed from our April 2019 event with Tees, Esk and Wear Valley NHS Foundation Trust (TEWV). Within prison settings, CPA has been poorly implemented and the principles underpinning the approach have been lost. QNPMHS and TEWV have been working collaboratively since the beginning of last year to create a thorough and effective guidance document to help support clinicians and services with the CPA process.

Purpose of the document

The purpose of the document is to standardise the CPA and successor processes and to ensure consistency within and between prisons and through transfers from and to community services. The guidance will also be helpful for immigration removal centres.

Training resources

To improve knowledge and awareness of CPA/CMHF within your prison, you can use the resources that have been developed by the Network in collaboration with QNPMHS member services. The resources include:

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