"when care plans dont care"

About: Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust / Assertive outreach

(as the patient),

I have been struggling with mental health problems for the past 6 years. Feelings of total loss to my mental health condition, with no definate explanation of my diagnosis. Every time i phone up in crisis im told to "walk the dog", no one listens or understands.

It wasn't till this year that i discovered that the mental health services used Care plans, giving advice to health proffessionals about how to handle a person in crisis

I asked to see my Care plan and was shocked to see how little information it contained (also it states that I have agreed to it _ which came as a surprise.)

Last week I asked to see my psychiatrist to ask him ? my diagnosis, and was told, with a look of surprise, that I have borderline personallity disorder. It was the first i've herd about it .

looking at the advice given by N.I.C.E. guidlines my treatment and especially my Care Plan appears totally inadequate, but it seems nobody cares as long as a care plan is in place ( the health care professionals have done their job.) Surely Care plans are there as a tool to help the clients not as a paper exercise for the staff.

If they're not used /written correctly and agreed with the client, then they are a waste of space. It feels there only use is to make the staff look like they're doing their job correctly, when in my view they are clearly not,

CARE PLANS SHOULD CARE !! and be written in co-operation with the client

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Response from James Maclachlan, Web Officer, Communications, Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust

Thanks for your comments and we are sorry to hear about your experience. If you would like us to look into this further please contact Dawn at Patient and Advice Liaison Service on 01772 695366/07507 595437.

In terms of care planning, service users should be at the centre of the assessment & planning process. Care planning must promote social inclusion and recovery and focus on individuals’ strengths, goals and aspirations as well as their needs and difficulties.

Care assessment and planning views a person ‘in the round’ seeing and supporting them in their individual diverse roles and the needs they have, including: family; parenting; relationships; housing; employment; leisure; education; creativity; spirituality; self-management

The actions agreed to meet identified needs and the people responsible for these actions must be recorded on the care plan.

Opportunities for self-care should be promoted and actions to encourage independence agreed

Care plans should only be written in the first person e.g. “I will “if this is a true reflection of what the service user has communicated, otherwise the plan needs to be written in the third person e.g. “he/she will”. If the service user has not been fully engaged in the care planning process then this should be recorded on the care plan.

Informal Carers form a vital part of the support required to aid a person’s recovery and therefore it is important to involve them in the process of assessment & care planning.

Service users & all parties named on the care plan need to receive copies of the care plan

Care plans must not contain jargon & need to be written in language that will be understood by everyone participating in the planning process.

Review and evaluation of the care plan should be ongoing

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