Cutting across age-boundaried services in improving the detection of young people with psychosis.

Transition of adolescence is associated with a peak incidence of most major mental illnesses. It is also the time when health services are ill equipped to address the needs of young people, with traditional service divides between child and adult services, with different cultures and approaches to care between the two, with the result that young people’s needs are not met. Early intervention in Psychosis services have been shown to be cost effective, through the reduction in use of bed days. However those becoming unwell under the age 17 have a worse prognosis, a longer time before they access treatment and are more likely to fall between the gaps in service provision. The introduction of youth services to provide an early intervention approach to care across the transition between child and adult services could improve outcomes for this group, but is unproven.

This project aims to provide evidence to bridge this gap in service provision by evaluating the effectiveness of a youth mental health service: What are the effects of a combined youth service for young people from the ages of 14-24 on the detection and early treatment of young people with a first episode of psychosis? What are the effects on the patient and carer experience of mental health services. What are the effects on the team culture of bringing adult and child mental health teams together? 


Project lead: Professor Belinda Lennox

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