Lester evaluation 

The life expectancy of people with serious mental illness, such as schizophrenia, is 15 to 20 years less than the general population.

Many of these early deaths are caused by preventable illness such as CVD, for example heart attack and stroke.

NHS England’s Sustainable Improvement team (formerly NHS Improving Quality) supported four pilot projects to implement service improvement initiatives, with the aim being to improve the cardiovascular health of people with serious mental illness.

Although the nature of each of the pilot projects was different, they all used the recently updated Lester tool (2014) to assess the physical health of people with serious mental illness.

The four sites were:

  • Mersey Care NHS Trust
  • Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust
  • 2gether NHS Foundation Trust
  • Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust

We led on the external evaluation of these projects. This included measuring levels of physical health monitoring and intervention before and after the implementation of service improvement initiatives.

The team also worked with the pilot sites to better understand the barriers and facilitators behind improving physical health monitoring and intervention. 

Download the full report

Detailed information:

Title: Evaluation of the Implementation of Lester 2014

Funded by: NHS Improving Quality

Ethical approval: 2015-1

Recruitment sites: Mersey Care NHS Trust, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust, 2gether NHS Foundation Trust, Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust.

Research questions: 

Does the Lester tool (see next section for the definition of the Lester tool) allow mental health Trusts to improve physical health monitoring and intervention?

What are the facilitators and barriers are for mental health Trusts to improve physical health monitoring and intervention?

For further details please contact:

Dr. Alan Quirk aquirk@rcpsych.ac.uk

Sonya Chee schee@rcpsych.ac.uk

Telephone: +44 020 3701 2699/86

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