A Clinical Audit Of Service User And Carer Involvement In An NHS Community Mental Health Team Risk Assessment Tool
Brendan J Dunlop
Division of Psychology and Mental Health, The University of Manchester, Manchester M13 9PL, UK
Correspondence: Brendan J Dunlop
Division of Psychology and Mental Health, The University of Manchester, Zochonis Building, Brunswick Street, Manchester M13 9PL, UK
Objectives: Service user involvement in mental health risk assessment is good practice for several reasons, including allowing service users to be in control of their own care and allowing the contribution of information potentially not known by staff. The objective of this audit was to ascertain how many service users and carers were being involved in their risk assessment in one Community Mental Health Team in the North-West of England.
Methods: Data were extracted from the service user’s risk assessment form on the host Trust’s electronic record system. Of 194 service users accepted into the service within a 12-month period, 83 were included in this audit.
Findings: Results indicate that 70% of the sample were involved in their risk assessment, and 70% indicated agreement/disagreement with outcomes. Evidence of collaboration between staff and service user in identifying interventions was found to be lacking.
Conclusion: Service user involvement in this audit fell short of expected standards. In light of this, recommendations are made to improve service user involvement in risk assessment. These include allowing staff to clarify barriers to involvement and adding service user involvement to routine clinical risk training. Other mental health services should audit service user involvement in risk assessment to ascertain if involvement in this area is being achieved.
Keywords: service user involvement, risk assessment, mental health
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