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Positive NHS mental health care results show Suffolk patients treated with dignity

More than 99% of people receiving community mental health care in Suffolk are treated with dignity and respect, a national survey has today <13 September 2012> revealed.

The great results for Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) come from the Care Quality Commission’s national NHS patient survey programme. Almost 300 people treated by the former Suffolk Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust, now part of NSFT, responded to the survey.

Overall, 60% of people said the care they received was excellent or very good, with an additional 22% saying it was good.

The positive results continued with 75% of people saying they had confidence and trust in the last person they saw, and a further 21% agreeing with this to some extent.

“In all nine sections of the survey no responses ever fall below the national average,” said Debbie White, director of operations for Suffolk. “Providing excellent community mental health care is a Trust priority.

“We believe that it is much better for someone to be treated at home, in their own environment with their friends and family around them, rather than disrupting their lives by admitting them into hospital. We are therefore really pleased with these results and of course look forward to building on them in Suffolk over the next 12 months.”

95% of the people asked said that their medication was explained and that 79% knew about possible side effects, which almost beats the national average.

Other results where more than 90% of respondents scored the Suffolk part of NSFT positively include:

  • views being included in a patients’ care plan
  • care coordinator organising care well or very well
  • patients being given time to discuss their condition
  • patients achieving goals with help from mental health services
  • patients expressing views at their care review
  • patients finding their care review helpful


“As well as highlighting our achievements, surveys like this are very helpful in showing areas where we can improve,” Debbie added. “It is really important for us to listen to what our patients are saying and improving the things that they have told us could be better.”

Areas for improvement include telling patients they can bring a friend, relative or advocate to a care review, asking patients whether they use non-prescription drugs and supporting patients in regards to finding housing.

The 2012 community mental health services survey was designed and coordinated by Picker Institute Europe’s Co-ordination Centre for the NHS Patient Survey Programme.​