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Individuals living with severe mental illness can have significant emotional, physical and social challenges. Collaborative care combines clinical and organisational components.
We tested whether a primary care-based collaborative care model (PARTNERS) would improve quality of life for people with diagnoses of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or other psychoses, compared with usual care.
We conducted a general practice-based, cluster randomised controlled superiority trial. Practices were recruited from four English regions and allocated (1:1) to intervention or control. Individuals receiving limited input in secondary care or who were under primary care only were eligible. The 12-month PARTNERS intervention incorporated person-centred coaching support and liaison work. The primary outcome was quality of life as measured by the Manchester Short Assessment of Quality of Life (MANSA).
We allocated 39 general practices, with 198 participants, to the PARTNERS intervention (20 practices, 116 participants) or control (19 practices, 82 participants). Primary outcome data were available for 99 (85.3%) intervention and 71 (86.6%) control participants. Mean change in overall MANSA score did not differ between the groups (intervention: 0.25, s.d. 0.73; control: 0.21, s.d. 0.86; estimated fully adjusted between-group difference 0.03, 95% CI −0.25 to 0.31; P = 0.819). Acute mental health episodes (safety outcome) included three crises in the intervention group and four in the control group.
There was no evidence of a difference in quality of life, as measured with the MANSA, between those receiving the PARTNERS intervention and usual care. Shifting care to primary care was not associated with increased adverse outcomes.
Death of patients by suicide can have powerful effects on psychiatrists. We report the findings of a survey completed by 174 psychiatrists on the effects of patient suicide on their emotional well-being and clinical practice, and the support and resources they felt would be helpful.
Results and clinical implications
The death of a patient by suicide usually had a major effect on respondents. Clinical practice was often negatively affected, and over a quarter of respondents considered a change of career path as a result. There were some gender differences in responses, with women reporting more sense of responsibility for the deaths and a greater effect on their clinical confidence. Desired support included a senior suicide lead clinician, support during formal post-suicide processes, opportunity for reflection on practice, information about resources to support families and help communicating with families and friends of the deceased.