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How mental health nursing can best improve service users' experiences and outcomes in inpatient settings: responses to a national consultation


N. Brimblecombe
National Institute of Mental Health in England
227 Wellington House
Waterloo Road London SEI 8UG UK


Despite a number of national developments in the past few years, concerns remain about the experience and outcomes for service users in inpatient care settings. As part of a national review of mental health nursing in England, a consultation exercise was carried out to ascertain the opinions of a wide range of stakeholders in order to inform subsequent recommendations. The consultation question specifically related to inpatient care was ‘How can mental health nurses best improve service users’ experiences, and outcomes, in inpatient care settings?' The consultation generated a total of 326 written responses, mostly from groups and organizations. Responses were subject to content analysis and the three largest categories were ‘Service users influencing services’ (n = 80, 31%), ‘Service users involved in own care’ (n = 74, 29%) and ‘Direct clinical time’ (n = 68, 26%), including respondents citing the need for protected therapeutic engagement time. Many of the themes raised in the consultation were subsequently reflected in the recommendations made in ‘From values to action; the Chief Nursing Officer’s review of mental health nursing'.