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To develop and pilot a clinician-rated outcome scale to evaluate symptomatic outcomes in liaison psychiatry services. Three hundred and sixty patient contacts with 207 separate individuals were rated using six subscales (mood, psychosis, cognition, substance misuse, mind–body problems and behavioural disturbance) plus two additional items (side-effects of medication and capacity to consent for medical treatment). Each item was rated on a five-point scale from 0 to 5 (nil, mild, moderate, severe and very severe).
The liaison outcome measure was acceptable and easy to use. All subscales showed acceptable interrater reliability, with the exception of the mind–body subscale. Overall, the measure appears to show stability and sensitivity to change.
The measure provides a useful and robust way to determine symptomatic change in a liaison mental health setting, although the mind–body subscale requires modification.
Deepak Garg, Consultant Psychiatrist (Perinatal and Liaison Psychiatry), Humber NHS Foundation Trust, Hull, UK,
Rajdeep Sandhu, Senior House Officer/Core Trainee Year 1 in Medicine at Staffordshire General Hospital, Stafford, UK