Children and Young People: Improving Access to Psychological Therapy (CYP IAPT)

The local evaluation of the Children and Young People’s Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (CYP IAPT) programme was undertaken by University of Cambridge/CLAHRC CP researchers, who developed a framework based on theoretical concepts of evaluating complex interventions, implementation science, and experience the team gained while evaluating Adult IAPT services in the East of England, as well as the local Young IAPT pilot project.

The work of CLAHRC CP on the evaluation of adult IAPT services has shown the power of sharing routine health data to provide feedback to local services on how they can see patients more effectively and achieve better value for money. Our aim was to do the same for CYP IAPT by rolling out the framework for the evaluation of the transformation of the Cambridge Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).

The first phase of the CYP IAPT project has enabled the transformation of the local CAMHS, and our involvement has created a unique opportunity to evaluate how the various components of the project have been implemented, how this results in improved outcomes, and at what cost. The evaluation is currently ongoing, with a first report on the implementation phase expected in August 2013.

A grant proposal has been worked up for the University of Cambridge/CLAHRC to evaluate the roll out of CYP IAPT across the University College London/King’s College London (UCL/KCL) Learning Collaborative which currently has 16 partnerships composed of 15 NHS Trusts (9 of the 10 mental health Trusts in London), 11 Local Authorities, 10 voluntary sector organisations and 2 Higher Education Authorities (UCL and KCL). Our proposed research plan is to provide insights for service improvement and service redesign using multiple case studies across the UCL/KCL Learning Collaborative. Key expected outcomes include:

  1. improved understanding of factors critical to the implementation of the CYP IAPT initiative, including the enhanced evidence based practice and patient participation leading to better outcome for service users;
  2. improved understanding of factors critical to cost effective mental health services for children and young people;
  3. contribution to the development of Payment by Results for CAMHS based on cost-effective evidence based practice.

According to the 2011 census the population served by the 16 partnerships – assuming coverage of a whole borough – is 5,645,200 of which 1,339,400 are aged 0-19 years. The collaborative will expand in September 2013 with a further 4 to 8 partnerships joining. The anticipated maximum population coverage would be around 7.5 million with 1.9 million aged 0-19 years.