Mental Health in Bristol - a year-long project Impact Report

Download (PDF 474KB)

Summary of report content

Healthwatch Bristol evaluated people's experiences of mental health services in Bristol within the last 12 months. They used a mixed methods approach with online surveys, visits to local services and two Enter and Views between November 2017 and July 2018. Healthwatch Bristol heard from 313 people via the Emotional Health and Wellbeing survey and a further 130 people about their experiences of using CAMHS. Alongside the service users who engaged directly with community pot funded organisations and a handful of patients we spoke to at Mason and Oakwood Wards and Riverside Unit.

The report found that waiting times to access services were consistently mentioned through both online surveys and during the IAPT recommissioning process. There is a need to consider alternative therapies to medication, such as ‘green therapies’ and social prescribing, and giving patients more choice in the treatment(s) they would like to receive. It was reported that services need to be more coordinated to support people and their complex needs. Social connectivity, peer support, physical activity and learning new skills were consistently and positively mentioned. It was felt that these can help prevent issues arising, help accelerate recovery, and in the long term ease pressure on primary care services. 

Recommendations included that reducing waiting times should be a priority; support during the wait and greater signposting should be reviewed; patients need to be listened to and proactively supported to access alternatives to medicine; people should be supported and empowered to access a wide range of services alongside and/or in addition to primary care; and commissioners should ensure that the hidden value of micro-providers and VCSE projects and initiatives are recognised and built into the mental health strategy.

Would you like to look at:

General details

Report title 
Mental Health in Bristol - a year-long project Impact Report
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Bristol
Date of publication 
Monday, 8 July, 2019
Date evidence capture began 
Wednesday, 1 November, 2017
Date evidence capture finished 
Tuesday, 31 July, 2018
Type of report 
Key themes 
Booking appointments
Communication between staff and patients
Health promotion
Holistic support
Information providing
Quality of care
Staff attitudes
Staff levels
Staff training
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
Primary research method used 
How was the information collected? 
Visit to provider
If an Enter and View methodology was applied, was the visit announced or unannounced? 

Details of health and care services included in the report

Mental health services 
Child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS)
Psychiatry / mental health (other services)

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Age group 
Specific ethnicity if known 
Sexual orientation 
Does the information include public's views? 
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
Does the information include staff's views? 
Does the information include other people's views? 
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 
Does the information contain a response from a provider? 
Not applicable
Is there evidence of impact in the report? 
Is there evidence of impact external to the report? 
What type of impact was determined? 
Tangible impact (not cost related)

Network Impact
Relationships that exist locally, regionally, nationally have benefited from the work undertaken in the report
Implied Impact
Where it is implied that change may occur in the future as a result of Healthwatch work. This can be implied in a provider  response, press release or other source. Implied impact can become tangible impact once change has occurred.
Tangible Impact
There is evidence of change that can be directly attributed to Healthwatch work undertaken in the report.