MHDN launch event held in the early summer of 2013 with over 120 key stakeholders.  This was attended by commissioning, provider, health, social care, voluntary and independent sectors, patients, carers and the public.  This launch event helped to shape priority areas, which were then agreed by Commissioning Assembly.

The SCN facilitated and led a Wessex wide forum examining the provision of services to deal with Huntingdon’s Disease and ways to improve current services.  The work is ongoing.

MHDN Clinical Lead led a national Tweet Chat entitled “Valuing mental health equally with physical health – Parity of esteem”

  • Improving physical health diagnosis in mental health (parity of esteem) - This project will focus on increasing the levels of physical health screening in patients with serious mental illness (SMI) to that of the general population.  The project will utilise a HEALTH passport approach, putting the patient in charge of their care.
  • Improving dementia diagnosis and quality of care throughout the pathway - This is a multi-faceted project with a number of agencies contributing to the outcome.  The project  comprises of four elements:
  • Evidence synthesis - Map evidence base and quality standards for diagnosis (including investigation) to enable diagnosis at the most appropriate level of care
  • Survey - Produce a robust and engaging survey for GPs and patients (the local populace) across Wessex to obtain an understanding of their views of current dementia diagnosis processes, how they should work and associated enablers and barriers.
  • Toolkit - Produce a “toolkit” of best practice guidance (identified from the other elements of the project) for the diagnosis of dementia and post diagnostic support to be implemented across Wessex; to include high quality documentation and may include other forms of media (e.g. video) to engage clinicians and other stakeholders.
  • Referral Methodology - Development of an integrated referral method (preferably electronic) linking primary and secondary care with other elements of the dementia diagnostic pathway and incorporating post diagnostic care resources and critical event management. This would need to be developed through engagement with primary and secondary care.
  • Improving access to neurological expertise – This project will map the neurological resources available across Wessex; it will establish a pilot project to improve the headache referral pathway and this project and will also seek to establish a neurology advice and guidance service.  It is anticipated that, if successful, these projects will be expanded and rolled out across the Wessex region. Under the auspices of this area and Mental Health, the SCN is also conducting work to improve the understanding of disease-specific critical events causing crisis, unscheduled care and delayed discharge from hospital and Post Diagnostic Care.