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Early intervention psychosis


NHS England is introducing a new access and waiting time standard aimed at people suspected of experiencing first episode psychosis that will come into effect from 1 April 2016. This will require that more than 50% of people experiencing first episode psychosis commence a National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE)-concordant package of care within 2 weeks of referral.

The HEE mandate commitment for 2015/16 is:

4.9. HEE will work across the system to ensure the workforce is available in sufficient numbers and possesses the requisite skills and training to deliver National Institute for Health and Care Excellence approved packages of care to more than 50% of individuals experiencing first episode psychosis within a maximum of two weeks

4.10. HEE will work with NHS England to understand any current shortfall in capacity and skills to deliver Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for psychosis and family interventions, to help ensure that a sufficient number of accredited training programmes are made available. HEE will explore further with NHS England any associated leadership training required to support the new psychological therapy training programmes so that they are translated into clinical practice.

EIP stands for early intervention in psychosis and EIP teams are specialist community mental health teams that treat individuals with a first episode of psychosis. As well as the new access and waiting time standards, from April 16 these services are being supported by an additional £30m to improve provision. To receive NICE concordant care, patients need access to two types of psychological therapies, CBT for psychosis and Family Intervention. The primary concern for HEE therefore is to commission training to increase capacity in teams to deliver these therapies. See our Mandate commitment to this in sections 4.5, 4.9 and 4.10.

The Department of Health are transferring £5m to HEE so we can support providers to be able to deliver the increase in EIP delivery and services. The money will be received in late September and there is every expectation from DH this will spent within this financial year. 

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