Don’t just screen intervene; a quality improvement initiative to improve physical health screening of young people experiencing severe mental illness
Greenwood P & Shiers D
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to improve the quality of monitoring of risk factors that predict the likelihood of people with severe mental illness (SMI) developing cardiovascular disease (CVD), diabetes and obesity, major contributors to poor physical health and risk of premature mortality. Design/methodology/approach – The first phase of the AQuA “Don’t just screen-intervene” initiative supported five specialised community-based Early Intervention for Psychosis services in North West England to assess the effectiveness of monitoring of cardiometabolic risk in their patients using standards derived from the Lester Positive Cardiometabolic Health Resource, a nationally acknowledged framework for people with psychosis receiving antipsychotic medication. The initial findings formed the basis for a quality improvement programme which ran from November 2012 until May 2013.
Findings – By the end of a six month quality improvement programme the likelihood of a patient receiving a comprehensive cardiometabolic risk screening (evidenced by recorded measurement of body mass index or waist circumference, blood pressure, blood glucose and lipid profile, assessment of smoking status and enquiry of relevant family history) had increased from 10 to between 63 and 80 per cent.