19 Mar 2021

The Mental Health Implementation Network aims to drive national collaborations and changes in mental health practice, and is funded by the NIHR for three years from October 2020. 

The Network is a collaboration of service users, local communities, health and care providers, commissioners and a range of regional and national stakeholders, including charities and local government. It is led by NIHR ARC South London, working closely with NIHR ARC East of England, as well as the other 13 ARCs nationally. 

Identifying unmet mental health needs

The aim of the scoping exercise is to identify specific areas of mental health care where there is unmet need, and which could be addressed through existing evidence-based solutions at scale. The idea is to support new or adapt existing interventions or models of service delivery, that meet the needs of patients and health systems, and are ready for implementation.

This will be done as part of a wider exercise, including a review of research evidence and workshops with stakeholders, to identify and prioritise interventions to improve mental health care in England across the life course, including children and young people’s mental health.

The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on people's mental health has highlighted the need to reassess our approach to ensure everyone has access to effective mental health services and support. We are asking everyone involved in mental health care to contribute to identifying unmet needs and solutions that can be introduced into the national health system.

Peter Littlejohns

Professor Peter Littlejohns, public health and multimorbidities theme lead, ARC South London

In our everyday practice we all witness the frustrations of service-users whose needs are still not met by mental health and social care services. This exercise offers the opportunity to contribute to identify such needs and propose evidence-based solutions that may already be available, simply waiting to be implemented at scale to make a real difference in people’s lives.

Professor Jesus Perez, mental health over the life course theme lead, ARC East of England

For the scoping exercise, the Network invites anyone involved in mental health care to complete a short questionnaire on unmet mental health needs and proposed solutions.   

Working with its members and drawing on evidence, the Network will use the results of the questionnaire to help it identify three or four solutions that can be implemented across England.   

Download and complete the questionnaire