Psychosis HIT 2022-23

Co-directors James Robinson, Sarah Sullivan, Simon Downer look back at the HIT's achievements in the last year.

  • 1st April 2023

Furthering research into psychosis prediction, treatment and recovery

The HIT continues to be involved in research into psychosis prediction, treatment and recovery.

‘P Risk’ is an algorithm to predict risk of psychosis using GP consultation history and sociodemographic variables.  Co-director Sarah Sullivan is investigating the feasibility and acceptability of P Risk thanks to an NIHR RfPB grant, and MRC / Wellcome Trust funding will enable the algorithm to be tested in four primary care networks in Bristol and London. Sarah is also progressing work into the development of a psychosis data platform to help clinical decision-making.

Co-director Simon Downer is the Principal Investigator for the RADAR trial (Research into Antipsychotic Discontinuation and Reduction). This is looking at reduction in antipsychotics for people with long-term psychosis who are in secondary mental health care. This year the study team gained funding to extend follow-up for participants for a further four years, which will improve the data collected.

HIT member Mark Batterham is working with the Supporting Healthy and Inclusive Neighbourhood Environments (SHINE) HIT as part of a new study on links between the built environment and experiences of psychosis.

Co-director James Robinson has successfully generated interest in developing a lived experience group, with eight people now involved, and conversations ongoing.

Exploring new perspectives on mental health

The relationship between weight and mental health has not been widely explored. To highlight this, colleagues from the Healthy Weight and Adversity and Trauma HITs organised a workshop to look at connections from different perspectives, with the aim of strengthening prevention and service provision in the region, which included a presentation and discussion on protecting the health of people experiencing psychosis.

Supporting wider work on understanding and treatment

This year Simon Downer brought national and international links to the HIT through serving as the interim Chair of the International Society for Psychological and Social Approaches to Psychosis (ISPS UK).

Supported by the Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Integrated Care Board, the HIT is hosting an event on Psychological Approaches to Psychosis led by people with lived experience. This will look at different ways of supporting people and how we can improve services across statutory, private, and voluntary and community sectors in the region, and will include a focus on race-related inequalities.

The HIT continues to build links across our system to address race-related health inequalities in mental health more broadly, including between Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust and the University of Bristol.

Funding enabled in 2022-23

Psychosis HIT helped secure £170,000 in 2022-23 for research, improving outcomes and addressing health inequalities.