Psychosis Health Integration Team (HIT) Directors Dr Sarah Sullivan, Dr Simon Downer, James Robinson and Martha Sneyd give an update on the team's activities in 2016-17.
The Psychosis HIT is a team of people who experience psychosis, those close to them, academics, mental health professionals, commissioners, service providers and other experts. We are working together to improve the support, treatment, services and lives of people with psychosis in the Bristol area.
We formally launched the HIT in June 2016 through the film season ‘Psychosis on Screen’. In collaboration with Watershed, we hosted three contemporary films depicting various experiences of psychosis. Accompanying talks and discussions helped to raise awareness of psychosis and increase the profile of the HIT.
Over 300 people attended the films and events. Feedback was very positive and we were pleased that the season attracted people with experience of psychosis to become involved in the HIT. Several local radio appearances helped us to spread awareness of psychosis to a wider audience.
We received Research Capability Funding for a qualitative study on improving the crisis response for people with psychosis. We are making sure that this is linked to reviews of the crisis service in the region.
As part of our ‘better integration of care pathways’ work-stream, we have conducted a preliminary study on psychosis in primary care. From this, we are developing a feasibility study and trial of a new intervention to improve patients’ transition from secondary to primary care. We are working with Bristol Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) to ensure our goals in this area are aligned.
In ‘improving physical health’, we're working on a study with NIHR CLAHRC West, using primary care data that will give insights into the relationship between taking more than one antipsychotic drug at a time and metabolic disorders. In collaboration with CCGs’ medicines management teams we will explore how we can address this issue.
We have appointed peer directors to our leadership team, putting people with experience of psychosis at the centre of our work. They have actively contributed to our leadership discussions, and helped recruit people with experience of psychosis and those close to them to become involved in the HIT. We’re building on this success to establish a regular programme of user and carer meetings in 2017. As one attendee at our launch advised:
“Carry on focusing on the people who have the real experiences. Involve them first hand and those who are close to them. It feels like that is the key.”