A cluster randomised controlled trial and process evaluation of a training programme for mental health professionals to enhance user involvement in care planning in service users with severe mental health issues (EQUIP): study protocol for a randomised controlled trial

Peter Bower, Chris Roberts, Neil O'Leary, Patrick Callaghan, Penny Bee, Claire Fraser, Chris Gibbons, Nicola Olleveant, Anne Rogers, Linda Davies, Richard Drake, Caroline Sanders, Oonagh Meade, Andrew Grundy, Lauren Walker, Lindsey Cree, Kathryn Berzins, Helen Brooks, Susan Beatty, Patrick CahoonAnita Rolfe, Karina Lovell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: Involving service users in planning their care is at the centre of policy initiatives to improve mental health care quality in England. Whilst users value care planning and want to be more involved in their own care, there is substantial empirical evidence that the majority of users are not fully involved in the care planning process. Our aim is to evaluate the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of training for mental health professionals in improving user involvement with the care planning processes.

METHODS/DESIGN: This is a cluster randomised controlled trial of community mental health teams in NHS Trusts in England allocated either to a training intervention to improve user and carer involvement in care planning or control (no training and care planning as usual). We will evaluate the effectiveness of the training intervention using a mixed design, including a 'cluster cohort' sample, a 'cluster cross-sectional' sample and process evaluation. Service users will be recruited from the caseloads of care co-ordinators. The primary outcome will be change in self-reported involvement in care planning as measured by the validated Health Care Climate Questionnaire. Secondary outcomes include involvement in care planning, satisfaction with services, medication side-effects, recovery and hope, mental health symptoms, alliance/engagement, well-being and quality of life. Cost- effectiveness will also be measured. A process evaluation informed by implementation theory will be undertaken to assess the extent to which the training was implemented and to gauge sustainability beyond the time-frame of the trial.

DISCUSSION: It is hoped that the trial will generate data to inform mental health care policy and practice on care planning.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)348
Publication statusPublished - 13 Aug 2015


  • Community Health Services/economics
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis
  • Health Care Costs
  • Health Personnel/economics
  • Health Resources/economics
  • Humans
  • Inservice Training/economics
  • Mental Disorders/diagnosis
  • Mental Health
  • Mental Health Services/economics
  • Patient Care Planning/economics
  • Patient Compliance
  • Patient Participation/economics
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Program Evaluation
  • Quality of Life
  • Research Design
  • Self Report
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • State Medicine/statistics & numerical data
  • United Kingdom

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