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Young woman talking to counsellor

The State of Care in Mental Health Services

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) recently published its review of mental health services in England, over the period 2104 – 2017. The report found that 68% of core services provided by NHS trusts were good, with 6% rated as outstanding. Among independent services, 76% were rated as good or outstanding (72% good and 4% outstanding).

However, there are a substantial minority of NHS trust and independent services that need to improve the quality of care they provide. 39% of NHS trusts were rated as ‘requires improvement’ as at 31 May 2017, as were 23% of independent services. A very small number were rated as inadequate; one NHS trust and three independent services.

The report identifies several areas of concern:

  • Concerns about ‘locked rehabilitation wards’
  • Great variation between wards in how frequently staff use restrictive practices and physical restraint to deescalate challenging behaviour
  • The impact of staffing shortages
  • Poor quality clinical information systems
  • Commissioning of crisis care services
    See the full report and rating tables at the Care Quality Commission website.

For help and support around mental health issues please see our Mental Health support page.

book titles for young people around mental health

Reading Well for young people

Are you a young person needing help to cope with the pressures of life? Or are you a parent, teacher or health professional supporting young people coping with difficult feelings and experiences that can affect their well-being? Reading Well for young people can provide the books to help.

Reading Well for young people is delivered by The Reading Agency in partnership with the Society of Chief Librarians and the Association of Senior Children’s and Education Librarians. It is funded by Arts Council England and the Wellcome Trust.

Northumberland libraries are participating in the Reading Well initiative for young people.  We are launching the scheme in Hexham and Berwick libraries with collections of the 35 books on the recommended book list available for loan at these libraries or by free request from any library in Northumberland.

The booklist of 35 titles  provides 13 to 18 year-olds with support and advice on common mental health conditions, such as depression, anxiety and stress, as well as difficult experiences like bullying and exams. All of the titles, which include self-help, psycho-education, memoirs, graphic novels and fiction, have been chosen by young people and health professionals.

more about mental health

Mental Health Task Group

The mental health task group aims to ensure that users of mental health services and their carers have a voice and can influence mental health service delivery in Northumberland.
The group works in partnership with providers and commissioners of mental health services to bring about improvements for the benefit of all service users.
The main remits of this group are to:
  • Consider mental health issues affecting residents of Northumberland and brought to the attention of Healthwatch Northumberland.
  • Share and receive information from providers and commissioners of mental health services
  • Work in a transparent, inclusive and timely manner.
  • Consider equality and diversity issues in relation to the matters under consideration and any impact current services or future recommendations may have on equalities groups.