Medication for mental health problems

Are people given understandable information about new prescriptions?

In 2017, 15% of respondents said that the last time they had a new medicine prescribed for their mental health needs they were not given information about it in a way that they were able to understand. The proportion of Community Mental Health Survey respondents reporting this has remained relatively constant between 2010 and 2017.

Updated January 2018.

About this data

The Community Mental Health Survey is sent to a random sample of service users from each trust aged 18 and over who received specialist care or treatment for a mental health condition within a specified time period.

The survey asks people about their overall care, crisis care, access and coordination of care, patient involvement, medicines and additional support.

Respondents who stated that they did not know/could not remember are excluded from the survey results. To enable national comparison between years, data is weighted to account for differences in response rates between trusts. A further weighting accounts for differences in response rates at a given trust in a given year, across age groups or gender.

The Community Mental Health Survey underwent two major redevelopments in 2010 and 2014 to revise its methodology and questionnaire content to reflect changes in policy and best practice.

Until 2013, a separate question was asked about whether the service user had been told about possible side effects of the medication.

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