Anxiety and depression audit finds need for more shared decision-making and increased referrals to psychological therapies

Online news
10 October 2019

Today, the results of the National Clinical Audit of Anxiety and Depression (NCAAD) have been released, showing significant gaps in the way service users with anxiety and depression are supported. 

The audit took place between June and September 2018 and collected information on service users’ care and treatment over a period of six months from their date of admission.

The findings of the report include: 
  • key information is not routinely being recorded during assessments 
  • although 91% of service users had a care plan, shared decision making needs to be improved
  • psychological therapies were only offered to 39% of service users
  • 39% of service users were not assessed using an outcome measure
  • 26% of service users did not have a crisis plan at the point of discharge.

The report makes a number of recommendations, including that Trusts provide effective systems that enable clinicians to collect and record key information from assessments, that care plans should be collaboratively developed and that services should be offering psychological therapies in line with NICE guidance. 

About NCAAD 

The National Clinical Audit of Anxiety and Depression (NCAAD) was developed following the findings of the National Audit of Psychological Therapies for Anxiety and Depression (NAPT) which took place between 2010-2014. NAPT was established to evaluate and improve the quality of psychological therapy treatment received by people with anxiety and depression in England and Wales.

The goal of NCAAD is to find out how services for people with anxiety and depression are performing so that quality of care that they offer can be improved. This audit focused on the care and treatment service users received during and after a period of inpatient care, run by NHS Mental Health Trusts in England