IMPARTS (Integrating Mental & Physical healthcare: Research, Training & Services) improves mental healthcare provision within medical settings across King's Health Partners.
IMPARTS is an initiative funded by King’s Health Partners to integrate mental and physical healthcare in research, training and clinical services at Guy’s, St Thomas’s and King’s College Hospitals, as well as South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust.
The IMPARTS package for physical healthcare settings is designed to support clinical teams in providing timely, tailored, evidence-based care to patients presenting at King’s Health Partner’s acute trusts.
Fiona Squire on the difference IMPARTS has made to her life
The package has five components:
We have developed an informatics platform that facilitates collection of patient-reported outcomes as part of routine clinical care. The outcome measures include core measures on depression, anxiety, and smoking, others are tailored to the specific patient group. This allows for the collection of relevant and useful information about how the patient is coping from an emotional wellbeing perspective but also how they are managing their physical condition. The information is immediately uploaded to the electronic health record for the healthcare professional to review and discuss with the patient during their appointment
To ensure identified need is met, the patient reported information is supplemented with guidance to the healthcare professional on possible referral pathways. These are based on existing resources available to the clinical team and the pathways are strengthened and streamlined with this system. A range of care pathways may be available from primary care to clinical psychology to liaison psychiatry, ensuring the needs of the patient are met appropriately.
All members of staff who use IMPARTS are offered training by a consultant clinical psychologist prior to starting the work. This is to ensure everyone feels confident and competent in addressing mental health needs with their patients. The sessions are flexible and built around the availability of the clinical team, and may be offered in one or more sessions depending on the needs and wishes of the team. Content covers opening up a discussion about mental health issues with patients, and making referrals. Training can also be given on more condition specific areas, for example the dermatology team received a session on addressing social anxiety relating to patients visible skin conditions. More extensive training is also offered to all KHP staff in a 5 day teaching course, which can also form an MSc level 7 15 credit module. This is aimed at healthcare professionals working in the general hospital setting and aims to equip them with the skills and knowledge to recognise and manage mental health issues commonly presented in this environment.
A portfolio of written self-help materials has been developed and continues to grow. They cover a range of issues related to physical and psychological health and functioning. They are tailored to specific patient groups so that psychological needs are considered within the context of the physical health problem. They are free to use and available for download here.
The routine collection of information on a range of psychological, physical, and behavioural outcomes allows for valuable research questions to be answered. Data can be analysed to look at the prevalence of mental health problems in different conditions, the associations with physical outcomes, or to look at the course of these problems over time, and the impact on wellbeing. There is general ethical approval to conduct research on any data collected via the IMPARTS platform. People wishing to conduct research can apply to the IMPARTS Research Oversight committee for access to the data.
Find out more about IMPARTS.