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If you would like to contribute to the newsletter, email your ideas to the Editorial Team.
We've produced some tips and advice on writing for the Old Age Psychiatrist, including the type of articles we are looking for and the best ways to write them.
The epidemiology and presentation of mental illness in older people is different to younger adults, and older people with mental illness often have a unique and complex set of physical, psychological and social factors complicating their care. For these reasons older people need dedicated inpatient and community mental health teams to look after them.
There is a global history of ageism in the funding and delivery of mental health services for older people. The UK has led the way in developing age-specific services which research has shown improve care in this group. These services are now under threat in the UK by the move to "ageless services". Commissioners and trusts have various reasons to consider this including a misguided belief it may save money or misinterpretation of the Equalities Acts around the UK.
The College is clear that older people need dedicated age-specific mental health services. We have assembled a compendium of evidence to support this below.
If your services are under threat, please look at and use this evidence. Many people have already found it helpful to rebut the move to ageless services.
- 'Ageless' dementia services are an insult to the elderly - The Telegraph
- Development of ageless mental health services - letter
- Criteria for Old Age psychiatry services in the UK
- IPG guest editorial: Wither old age psychiatry?
- JCPMH: Guidance for commissioners of older people’s mental health services
- Letter in The Lancet: Psychiatry for the elderly in the UK
- IJGP letter: Redefining old age psychiatry - a pragmatic approach
- The Times Letter to the Editor: Mental health and how the other half lives
- RCPsych letter to Jeremy Hunt - Ageless services
- BJPsych editorial: Old age psychiatry in the modern age
- JGCR: Ageless mental health services and the future of old age psychiatry in the UK.
- Nilforooshan R et al (2016) Comparison of service utilisation and costs of working age adults and older adults receiving treatment for psychosis and severe non‐psychotic conditions in England: implications for commissioning. International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, 32:110-115.
- Abdul-Hamid WK, Lewis-Cole K, Holloway F, Silverman AM. Comparison of how old age psychiatry and general adult psychiatry services meet the needs of elderly people with functional mental illness: cross-sectional survey. Br J Psychiatry 2015; 207: 440–3.
Please give us any feedback as to whether these resources help or not in your fight to preserve your services.
- Position statement on loneliness and social isolation - joint report with the BGS, December 2019 (PDF)
- Integrated care and mental health November 2019
- CR222 Caring for the whole person: physical healthcare of older adults with mental illness: integration of care (PDF) May 2019
- PSO2/19: Position statement on the provision of liaison psychiatry services across the lifespan (PDF) May 2019
- CR218: Bridges not walls: good practice guidance for transition and cooperation between mental health services for older patients (PDF) May 2019
- CR221: Suffering in silence: age inequality in older people’s mental health care (PDF)
- CR217: Young-onset dementia in mental health services (PDF)
- CR211: Our Invisible Addicts (PDF)
- Delivering the NHS Long-Term Plan's ambition of ageing well: Old age psychiatry as a vital resource FR/OA/06 (PDF)
- The integration of care and its impact on older people's mental health FR/OA/05 (PDF)
- Criteria for old age psychiatry services in the UK FR/OA/04 (PDF)
- Guidance for job planning FR/OA/03 (PDF)
- Depression in care homes - joint report with the BGS 2018 (PDF)
- Careers leaflet for Foundation Doctors 2018 (PDF)
- Outcomes in older people's mental health service November 2017
Faculty documents and submissions
- Read our 10 recommendations for working with older adults launched at our 2018 International Congress
- Read our submission about the Five Year Forward View to the APPG for Mental Health.
Survey of services results
- See best practice guidance for commissioners and carers. For more information visit the dementia section of the NHS London Clinical Networks website
- Guidance on Neuroimaging for dementia
- Streamlining Memory Service Pathways
- Commissioners’ checklist for dementia
- Guidance on the content of delirium policies
- Guidance on managing pain for people with dementia
- Guidance on using a recognition scheme
- Guide to dementia training for health and social care staff
- Immediate post diagnosis support guide.
- The Young Onset Dementia Pathway gives recommendations for commissioners and practitioners to create the ideal care pathway. It was developed by people affected by young onset dementia and the people who work with and support them
- National Collaborating Centre for Mental Health Dementia Care Pathway full implementation guidance.
- Guidelines for the peri-operative care of people with dementia (Wiley Online Library)
- Driving with Dementia or Mild Cognitive Impairment Consensus Guidelines, by Newcastle University and endorsed by the College (2018)
- Hidden in plain sight, by Age UK, examines the unmet mental health needs of older people.
- MindEd is a new educational resource that has been co-produced with older people. It explains a range of mental illnesses/concerns and offers practical advice for dealing with them.
- NHS England's Mental Health in Older People Practice Primer helps improve recognition of mental health issues in older people.
- Physical health drugs start-stop reminder card (Word)
- Brain Health and Mental Well-Being: GCBH Recommendations on Feeling Good and Functioning Well (PDF)
These videos have been created by other organisations for sharing and teaching purposes.
Delirium Awareness - #ICanPreventDelirium
As part of the #ICanPreventDelirium campaign, faculty members Dr Krishnan and Dr Bennett, in collaboration with Teesside local councils and CCG produced this video with the aim of improving recognition and management of delirium in any healthcare setting. This video was developed by Dr Mani Santhanakrishnan, Tees Esk & Wear Valleys NHS Trust for Health Education England North East.
Delirium Superimposed on Dementia - #DeliriumReady
Delirium in older adults often goes unrecognised by health care professionals and can be poorly managed. People with Dementia have a higher risk of developing delirium. This video has been produced to raise the awareness of Delirium Superimposed Dementia and also signposted ways of managing it using a tool we developed (delirium wheel) that can be used in a care home, hospital or community setting. This video was developed by Dr Mani Santhanakrishnan, Tees Esk & Wear Valleys NHS Trust for Health Education England North East.
Depression in older people
This video explores the symptoms of depression in older people and what help you can get if you are feeling depressed. It also shows how to cope if you are a friend or family member of an older person suffering from depression. This video was developed by Dr Sophia Bennett for Health Education England North East.
Mental Health in Older Adults - Larry's Story
The following video was developed by Dr Isabela Troya, as part of her PhD at Keele University, in collaboration with a patient advisory group. The video aims to raise awareness of mental health problems in older adults.
The Faculty of Old Age Psychiatry are pleased to announce the launch of “Delivering the NHS Long-Term Plan's ambition of ageing well: Old age psychiatry as a vital resource”.
Successfully delivering the welcome ambitions of the NHS Long Term Plan (LTP) for older people depends on the recognition that specialist OPMH services provide essential expertise. Access to these specialist services must be incorporated at every stage of planning and implementation in all areas to meet the needs of older people.
This report incorporates views from older people, service users, carers and a wide range of health and social care professionals and provides insight into:
- the essential role played by old age psychiatrists, and the Older People’s Mental Health (OPMH) services to whom they provide leadership, in delivering high quality outcomes for the health and wellbeing of the UK’s ageing population;
- the centrality of this to the Ageing Well agenda; and
- how best to support decision-makers responsible for implementing the NHS LTP as it affects older people
This report summarises good practice examples of collaboration and innovations involving old age psychiatrists across different health and social care settings, and especially in care homes.
While the LTP sets out a vision for health services in England this report is also relevant for those involved in the development and commissioning of integrated health and social care services for older people across the UK devolved nations.
Our thanks goes to Dr Mohan Bhat and colleagues for producing this document and to all of you who sent in examples to be included.I urge you to share this report with your local Commissioners and colleagues involved in the Primary Care Networks , Integrated Care Systems and Sustainability and Transformation plans.