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How much risk training takes place in mental health services?: A national survey of training and policies

  • Sue Davies (a1), Tim Amos (a1) and Louis Appleby (a1)
Abstract
Aims and Method

The main aim of the study was to establish the proportion of hospital trusts in England and Wales in which training in the assessment of suicide risk and risk of harm to others is available to mental health professionals. A questionnaire was sent to clinical directors covering training on these subjects and in mental health legislation, details of training and the existence of risk-related policies.

Results

Seventy-six per cent of trusts said they provided training in suicide risk assessment for junior psychiatrists; for hospital and community nurses, the figure was just over 50%. Between 50% and 60% of trusts said they provided training in the assessment of risk of harm to others. Provision of training in mental health legislation was said to occur in most trusts. In some key areas of risk management, hospital policies were uncommon.

Clinical Implications

Despite the current importance of risk assessment in mental health services, many hospital trusts do not provide their staff with relevant training.

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Copyright
This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
References
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Appleby, L., Shaw, J., Amos, T., et al (1999) Safer Services. Report of the National Confidential Inquiry into Suicide and Homicide by People with Mental Illness. London: Department of Health.
Department of Health (1999a) Saving Lives: Our Healthier Nation. London: HMSO.
Department of Health (1999b) National Service Framework for Mental Health. London: Department of Health.
Lingham, R., Candy, J. & Bray, J. (1996) The Report of the Inquiry into the Treatment and Care of Raymond Sinclair. Kent: West Kent Health Authority and Kent County Council.
Mishcon, J., Dick, D., Welch, N., et al (1995) The Report of the Independent Inquiry Team into the Care and Treatment of Kenneth Grey. London: East London and the City Health Authority.
Morris, R., Gask, L. Battersby, L., et al (1999) Teaching frontline health and voluntary workers to assess and manage suicidal patients. Journal of Affective Disorders, 318, 7783.
Ritchie, J., Dick, D. & Lingham, R. (1994) The Report of the Inquiry into the Care and Treatment of Christopher Clunis. London: HMSO.
Royal College of Psychiatrists (1996) Assessment and Clinical Management of Risk of Harm to Other People. Council Report, CR53. London: Royal College of Psychiatrists.
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BJPsych Bulletin
  • ISSN: 0955-6036
  • EISSN: 1472-1473
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-bulletin
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How much risk training takes place in mental health services?: A national survey of training and policies

  • Sue Davies (a1), Tim Amos (a1) and Louis Appleby (a1)
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