Patient & Carer Representatives x 4 (QNPMHS, QNPICU)

  • Location : Remote
  • Status : 3-Year Fixed Term Contract
  • Salary : £140 per day
  • Closing date : 14/02/2024
  • Interview date : 23/02/2024

The Royal College of Psychiatrists is seeking 4 Patient or Carer Representatives to join the Quality Network for Prison Mental Health Services (QNPMHS) and the Quality Network for Psychiatric Intensive Care Units (QNPICU) as Workers. The successful applicants will have recent lived experience of either prison mental health or psychiatric intensive care (PICU) or caring for someone who has accessed these services.

As part of this role, you will be closely involved with the network in which you are appointed to and particularly with the project team, to engage the wider membership and partner organisations in advocating for the QNPMHS and QNPICU patient groups.

The Networks are quality improvement projects that works with PICU and prison mental health services all around the UK. The views, ideas, skills and experience of people who have used these services are vital for our work.

The Networks take PICU and prison mental health care teams through a supportive process of self- and peer-review to assess how the service is performing against an agreed set of quality standards.

The self-review involves completion of a team checklist and gathering of feedback from patients, family, friends and carers, partner agencies and staff. The peer-review visit involves verifying the self-review data, considering the service in its unique context and exchanging information about best practice. Peer-review teams comprise of psychiatric intensive care or prison mental health care professionals, a member of the QNPICU/QNPMHS project team and a patient and/or carer representative.

You can read more about the Networks on our webpages:

Patient representatives and Carer representatives are expected to contribute by attending and contributing to the peer reviews. Opportunities may also arise for involvement with the Advisory Group, Accreditation Committee, standards development, annual conference and other events.

Description of the main stages of the Networks

Quality standards for specific mental health services – The standards spell out what needs to happen in order to provide a good service and are used to measure service quality. For example, a standard on patient information might state ‘patients are offered a summary of their care plan’. This standard would then be measured and if a mental health team is not meeting the standard, they will be asked to put changes in place to meet it in the future.

Who decides what goes in the standards?

The standards are developed by looking at existing guidance and by consulting with experts in the field, including staff, patients and carers. This will sometimes involve a large meeting where people discuss what should and should not be included. 

Self-review - This involves us sending out questionnaires or other forms for staff, patients and carers to fill in and send back to us. We sometimes refer to these as ‘data collection tools’. These all link to the quality standards and help to inform us about whether a standard is being met.

Peer review – This involves mental health staff, patients and/or carers visiting another mental health service for a day to look around, interview people and take part in group discussions. People going on peer reviews, whether clinicians, patients or carers, all receive full training and support from the project team. These are day long visits which follow a clear structure and are facilitated by an experienced lead.

Writing reports – Project staff write reports which summarise the achievements of the service as well as areas they need to improve upon.  The reports are sent back to the service so that they can learn from the findings.

Learning events – Some projects hold events so that people in particular areas of mental health can share ideas and help each other improve ways of working.  Patients and carers are often involved in these events, with the potential for dedicated workshops being run by patients and carers about their experiences and how this can support service improvement.

Advisory Group - Each network has its own Advisory Group comprising of professionals who represent key interests and areas of expertise relevant to the network, and patients and carers who have experience of using the services the network focuses on. The purpose of the group is to advise and further the work of the network.

Accreditation Committee – The QNPICU network also has an Accreditation Committee, which accredits services based on the evidence gathered during the self- and peer review. The committee may request further information or a re-visit to the service if there are concerns about quality.  

Please complete the enclosed application form and send to:

How to apply

For more information and instructions on how to apply, please download the following documents:

Closing date for applications: Wednesday 14 February 2024 at 10am

Interview date: Friday 23 February 2024 (via Microsoft Teams)

The College is a proud member of the Disability confident employer scheme. A Disability confident employer will offer an interview to any applicant that declares they have a disability and meets the minimum criteria (essential) for the job as defined by the employer.  

Please see Candidate Information Pack for more information.