The Child- and Parent-reported Outcomes and Experience from Child and Young People's Mental Health Services 2011-2015 is the first detailed analysis of routinely collected data related to outcomes and experience of those seen in child and young people mental health services. It considers data from services involved in the Children and Young People's Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (CYP IAPT) programme (2011-2015) and further data from CORC members collected between 2007-2010.

The findings

Of those who saw a specialist at a child and young people's mental health services between 2011 and 2015 for whom we have data - amounting to just under 8,000 cases1 - approximately:

  • 1 in 3 self-reported2 "recovery"3 (at end of treatment they did not score above threshold on any of the measures completed);
  • for 1 in 2 there was reliable improvement (scores on at least one measure had improved more than likely due to measurement error and no scores on any measure had deteriorated);
  • 1 in 10 deteriorated (scores on at least once measures got worse than would be likely accounted for by measurement error).

According to the evidence collected from parents4;

  • around 1 in 5 cases were reported by parents as "recovered",
  • 2 in 5 reported reliable improvement; and
  • 1 in 10 reported deterioration.

To read about the findings in full, download the report here. An Executive Summary is also available.

The data are flawed, due to some being missing or erroneously recorded; uncertain, in part due to differences in the perspectives of those recording the information; proximate, in that proxies for outcome and impact are considered; and sparse, in that low volumes of key subgroups limit our ability to reliably extrapolate.

This report was first published in November 2016 CORC. A revised version was published in December 2016 which includes a number of corrections to the original version. A full erratum table listing the changes is available here.

Next steps

The CORC team are currently carrying out further analysis of the data which informed this report, focusing on the following areas:

  • different types of difficulty, such as anxiety and depression, and in relation to this change in outcomes and the impact of gender, age, length of problem, severity of problem, and other demongraphic factors such as socioeconomic status (results to be published later in 2017)
  • effect on outcomes by complexity factors, including experience of trauma and parent health
  • outcomes in relation to 'needs-based' groupings, as set out in the organisation's work on the THRIVE Framework
  • sources of variation in symptom change over time using session-by-session data

Footnotes

1Note on sample and characteristics: Closed cases with paired child or parent report measure with at least one rating above threshold at outset and where seen for treatment as defined by three events in a dataset and not just for assessment in services participating in the CYP IAPT programme. See discussion below about the flaws and limitations of these data
2Those who completed child/youth-report questionnaires tended to be older and female ( mean age 14, 72% female)
3“Recovery” referred to in quote marks as relates to limited meaning related to movement across a threshold on a questionnaire rather than broader self-defined concepts of what recovery means for a given individual.
4Parent/carer who answered tended to be of younger and male children (mean age 11, 54% female)