Guidance on improving physical health of severely mentally ill people published

Guidance on improving physical health care for people with severe mental health problems, given their much lower levels of physical health, is published today by the government.

It says people with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder are likely to have their physical health problems unnoticed or poorly managed, despite National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence guidance and measures in the GP contract to improve access to care.

The guidance proposes that primary care trusts set up specific programmes to provide integrated and continuous care, led by a senior mental health nurse, including health checks and advice, and support with access to appropriate services.

Each GP practice should maintain accurate registers of people with severe and enduring mental health problems, and the lead nurse should have good links with mental health and substance misuse teams in the area.



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