The Care Programme Approach (CPA) up to 2012
Up to 2012 the Care Programme Approach (widely known as CPA) was the main way of assessing and identifying the care needs of people with a mental illness receiving secondary mental health services. Implementing CPA was a statutory requirement throughout the UK although the way it happened differed to some extent across Wales, Scotland and England. CPA continues to operate in England, but in June 2012 it was superseded in Wales by Part 2 of the Mental Health Measure (2010).
The main elements of CPA were (and continue to be in England):
• an assessment of a person’s health and social care needs
• a written care plan agreed with all those involved in the delivery of a person’s care including the Community Mental Health Team, GP and carer
• nomination of a Care Coordinator to act as the main point of contact, coordinating the delivery of a person’s care
• monitoring and review of a person’s care plan, and health and social care needs.
The Mental Health Measure from 2012
These main elements of CPA also feature in Part 2 of the Mental Health Measure and, where CPA was implemented well, there will be clear similarities. Unfortunately best practice CPA was never consistently implemented and that is why Hafal campaigned long and hard for a completely new mental health law in Wales to improve care and treatment planning for those receiving secondary mental health services.
To give it its full title, “The Mental Health (Wales) Measure 2010”, was passed by the National Assembly for Wales in 2010 and received the royal assent at the end of that year. As such, it has the same legal status in Wales as other Mental Health Acts. However, significant preparation was needed before it could be implemented and Part 2 came into force in June 2012. It therefore remains relatively new law and it will be some time yet before its full impact will be felt. So it is important that people with mental health problems and their families understand the main points of the Measure and know about the support their legal rights. At the same time Hafal will continue to campaign for local services to implement the Measure fully and we hope this will significantly improve the experience of secondary mental health services for people in Wales. We explain the Measure in detail in another page of this website and so here we just briefly summarise the main points of Care and Treatment Planning in Part 2.
Care and Treatment Planning in Part 2 of the Mental Health Measure
Local Health Boards and Local Authorities have a joint duty to implement Part 2, and people who receive secondary mental health services have two important new rights:
• the right to have a Care Coordinator appointed to work with them to coordinate their care and treatment, and
• the right to an individual and comprehensive Care and Treatment Plan to assist their recovery.
The Measure is accompanied by a comprehensive Code of Practice which sets out what these rights should mean in practice. In summary it should mean:
• holistic assessment to establish information from which care and treatment planning, and future work, can take place
• allocation of a Care Coordinator who will be a mental health professional with appropriate skills and qualifications (such as a social worker, mental health nurse, occupational therapist, psychologist or doctor) and who will be responsible for working with a person to agree a written Care and Treatment Plan
• a Care and Treatment Plan which will consider at least eight areas of a person’s life:
– finance and money
– personal care and physical well-being
– education and training
– work and occupation
– parenting or caring relationships
– social, cultural or spiritual
– medical and other forms of treatment including psychological interventions
• monitoring and review with a Care Coordinator having ongoing responsibility for monitoring the implementation of the Plan and a duty to have a formal review at least once a year.
Hafal has detailed publications to assist service users, and their families and carers, through the Care and Treatment Planning process and these are well worth looking at for further information and advice.
Hafal has produced a user’s guide to Care and Treatment Planning which offers useful hints and tips for getting the most out of the process. For a free copy contact Hafal on 01792 816 600, or download from here.