Personal budgets can support recovery and transform mental health services, say Centre for Mental Health and NHS Confederation Mental Health Network

12 August 2012, London

Personal health and social care budgets can help people with a mental health condition to set their own goals and rebuild their lives, according to a briefing paper released today by Centre for Mental Health and the NHS Confederation’s Mental Health Network.

The paper discusses how the twin concepts of personalisation and recovery are transforming mental health services in the UK and is the second in a series of briefings produced by the Implementing Recovery through Organisational Change (ImROC) project.

Andy Bell, deputy chief executive at Centre for Mental Health said:

"Recovery-oriented practice helps people to set their own goals and priorities. And personalisation gives people a greater say on how their health and social care needs are met. Combining the two in the right way enables people to make important decisions about their own lives.

"Early results from Northamptonshire, where Personal Health Budgets in mental health are being trialled, show that service users who have used their personal health budgets to access recovery-oriented services reported high levels of satisfaction, and there has been no increase in cost."

Recovery is a process through which people find ways of living meaningful lives with or without the ongoing symptoms of their condition. Helping someone recover is not just about managing symptoms, it includes finding and keeping a job, having somewhere safe to live and developing supportive relationships with family.

Recovery, Personalisation and Personal Budgets outlines the eight core features that need to be put in place if personal health budgets in the NHS and Personal Budgets in social care are to support recovery.

The briefing also sets out the shared philosophy and objectives of recovery and personalisation and discusses what the two approaches mean for changing the current service system.

Rachel Perkins, consultant with the ImROC project team said:

"Both recovery and personalisation are rooted in self-determination and reclaiming the rights of full citizenship for people with a mental health condition. With personal budgets and personal health budgets embedding the three core components of recovery, hope, control and opportunity, full citizenship is possible."

Paddy Cooney, Director of the Mental Health Network said:

"Mental health services now face the challenge of enhancing the 'real wealth' that underpins the quality of a person’s life.  By services showing a commitment to operating in a recovery focused manner, they are not limiting people to the confines of their mental health disorder, but giving them an opportunity to rebuild their lives."

Download MH Network's Briefing on supporting recovery in mental health (962 KB)

Recovery, personalisation and personal budgets

Recovery, personalisation and personal budgets cover image

Recovery and personalisation both challenge the current mental health system and require significant changes in the culture, practice and organisation of services.

This paper explores the links between recovery and personalisation and demonstrate how both are part of a common agenda for mental health system transformation.


Download size: 804 KB

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Personal Budgets on DVD

The Personal Budgets pilot in Northamptonshire has produced a DVD that contains patients and health professionals describing their experience and the benefits of Personal Health Budgets for people with long term mental health conditions.

View it at: personal-health-budgets/