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The Royal College of Psychiatrists Improving the lives of people with mental illness

Video: Old Problems, New Solutions - One Year On

This short animation marks the anniversary of the publication of the Acute Adult Psychiatric Care Commission report, "Old Problems, New Solutions: Improving acute psychiatric care for adults in England". It contains a checklist of actions psychiatrists can take to improve acute care in their area.

Video Transcript

Last year, a ground-breaking report identified problems in acute psychiatric care for adults in England.

‘Old Problems, New Solutions’ said patients with mental health problems should have the same rapid access to high quality care as patients with physical health problems.

The report - published by an independent Commission supported by the Royal College of Psychiatrists - made 12 recommendations including the need to introduce waiting time targets and to adopt new approaches to quality, data management, innovation and investment.


One year on, progress has been made.

The Government recognised that all adults should be able to access acute mental health care as close to home as possible and made plans to achieve this by 2021.


But a lot of work still needs to be done. And as a Psychiatrist there’s a lot you can do in your area.

  1. You are well placed to encourage your Trust to work with commissioners and Clinical Networks and undertake a service capacity assessment.
    This will help to ensure an appropriate number of beds and sufficient resources in Crisis Resolution and Home Treatment teams to meet the local demands in your area.
  2. You can also encourage your Trust to collect better quality data, that can be easily understood by patients and carers and allow the whole mental health system to be more efficient and accountable.
  3. Last but not least, you can prompt your Trust to:
  • adopt a system-wide approach to quality improvement
  • set up quality improvement training for all inpatient staff to address leadership and cultural issues
  • work with commissioners and Clinical Networks to share good practice.


Trusts across England that have adopted these approaches have had good outcomes. These steps can make a real difference. With your help, we can make things better within acute inpatient care.

[On screen]
Join the discussion #CAAPC
To find out more, visit where you will also find the Commission’s report for Northern Ireland

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