Mental Health Safety Improvement Programme (MHSIP), a three year national AHSN programme is commissioned by NHS England and NHS Improvement as part of the Patient Safety Strategy. It aims to support mental health trusts test and scale interventions designed to improve safety in inpatient settings.


Project overview


The programme has three primary objectives:

  1. Reducing Restrictive Practice – building on the National Collaborating Centre for Mental Health (NCCMH) collaborative on restrictive practice.

  2. Reducing Suicide and Deliberate Self-Harm – Considering instances of absence without leave (AWOL), suicide and self-harm whilst on agreed leave and ligature assessments. We will also support scoping work of suicide and self-harm in acute non-mental health settings and in healthcare staff.
  3. Improving Sexual Safety – building on NCCMH collaborative on sexual safety.


The work will be underpinned by the principles of quality improvement, co-design and patient safety learning. A Patient Safety Network will support the programme, bringing together individuals and organisations concerned with safer care and improved outcomes in mental health in a dedicated space for improvement, shared learning, and growth.

We will seek to address existing inequalities where they exist to ensure our work improves the lives of those with the worst outcomes fastest.


National AHSN Network programmes


Early Intervention Eating Disorders

This programme is supporting mental health teams across the North West Coast to speed up the diagnosis and treatment of eating disorders in young people aged between 16 and 25. 

This programme aims to achieve earlier intervention and treatment of eating disorders in young people, a reduction in the time a young person is untreated for their eating disorder, a reduction in waiting times as well as admissions to hospital and lastly reducing the use of healthcare services resulting in cost savings.

South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and King’s College London developed a model called FREED (First episode Rapid Early intervention for Eating Disorders). This care package is aimed at overcoming barriers to early treatment and recovery.  

To find out more about the programme visit the national AHSN Network programme page.


Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

We are working with mental health trusts and community paediatric services across the region to improve the ADHD assessment offer to children and young people by implementing a computer based objective assessment tool (measuring attention, impulsivity and activity) to supplement current clinical assessment processes.

This tool aims to increase the speed and accuracy of diagnosing ADHD as well as improving the experience for patients, their families and also clinicians.

East Midlands AHSN supported a 12-month, real-world demonstrator project, where an objective assessment tool (QbTest) was used in different pathways across three East Midlands NHS trusts.

To find out about the results from this project, for more information on the programme and to watch an introductory video, visit the national AHSN Network programme page.

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