To ascertain current levels of access to home treatment for those with acute mental illness and future plans of trusts and purchasing authorities to provide such services. Also, to assess the attitudes of these organisations towards this form of treatment. A postal survey of all mental health trusts and purchasing authorities within the UK was carried out.
One hundred and seventy-two trusts and 82 health authorities returned questionnaires, representing a response rate of 75% and 67% respectively. Only 27 (16%) of trusts provided home treatment but 58 (40%) had plans to do so. All health authorities and 97% of trusts were in favour of the principle of providing home treatment.
Despite the low levels of provision of home treatment trusts and health authorities were strongly in favourof it. There is likely to be a large increase in its availability over the next 12 months.
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