SCIE media statement

Parental mental health – Final evaluation: Learning lessons and putting it into practice

6 March 2012

A lot of small changes can make a big difference.

SCIE implementation site; steering group member

Getting it right for families affected by parental mental ill health can be challenging. A new evaluation report from SCIE the shows how ten implementation sites have tackled some of the barriers to providing holistic support. The implementation sites have consisted of five English local authority areas and the five Northern Ireland Health and Social Care Trusts. 

The sites have worked to implement the recommendations of SCIE’s Think child, think parent, think family guide. Launched in 2009, this has provided advice and guidance on effective support that addresses children’s needs,whilst recognising the parental responsibilities of adults with mental health problems. 

The sites found a range of ways to implement the recommendations, including:

Sites have also developed other new approaches, including creation of a knowledge and skills framework for staff, and the use of the Common Assessment Framework to identify and address the needs of the whole family.

SCIE’s Deputy Chief Executive Amanda Edwards says:

The evaluation illustrates just how much can be done locally to make services better fit the needs of parents with mental health issues. This need not cost a lot – even small changes to working practices and training can make a difference.

SCIE have also launched Think child, think parent, think family: Putting it into practice. This At a glance briefing for practitioners highlights what the sites have done and the lessons learned. 


Media contact

Steve Palmer | Press and Public Affairs Manager | Tel: 020 7766 7419 | Mob: 07739 458 192 | Email: