“Immense knowledge” of Huntercombe Group clinicians should be shared across globe
Posted June 12th 2012
The “immense knowledge” of clinicians working for The Huntercombe Group and other independent providers should be shared with services across the globe.
Writing in the International Psychiatry journal, Dr Claire Royston, medical director of The Huntercombe Group, pointed out that the independent sector has now accumulated a unique and valuable expertise in how to provide tailor-made and highly-specialist secure care for people with learning disabilities.
As state healthcare systems around the world increasingly look to the independent sector to improve patient choice, then this expertise of clinicians working for providers such as The Huntercombe Group could be shared internationally, wrote Dr Royston in a letter in the latest edition of the journal, published by the Royal College of Psychiatrists.
This would improve strategic and patient-centred thinking on the future development of services for this patient group.
Dr Royston was responding to an article on governance, choice and the global market for mental health, by Philip Sugarman and Andrew Kakabadse.
Her letter pointed out that the sector of secure forensic care and highly-specialised treatment for people with learning disabilities has recorded one of the largest growth of independent sector role provision and expertise in recent years.
The thirteenth Biennial Report of the Mental Health Act Commission showed that in 1998 15% of individuals with a learning disability were detained within hospitals in the independent sector. This had grown to 46% of individuals (545 of 1184) in 2008.
Dr Royston’s letter also said that the independent sector must “emphasise the message” that, for mental health and learning disability care, almost all independent care is NHS funded.
“The independent sector works in clinical partnership with the NHS,” wrote Dr Royston.
A recognition of this would improve acknowledged political “tensions” between public and private UK providers, she wrote.
“Actively promoting this message will enable the public to understand more clearly how the independent sector can often provide more effective and better-quality services which remain overseen by the NHS.”
* International Psychiatry journal - http://www.rcpsych.ac.uk/publications/journals/ipinfo1.aspx
* The Huntercombe Group’s learning disability services: http://www.huntercombe.com/our-services/learning-disabilities/