NHS England has stated that people living with severe mental illness (SMI) face one of the greatest health inequality gaps in England. This population group are at risk of dying on average up to two decades earlier than the general population.
This disparity in health outcomes is partly due to physical health needs being overlooked, both in terms of identification and in receiving appropriate treatment. People are not being offered appropriate or timely screenings despite their higher risk of poor physical health. There is also a low up take of information, tests and interventions relating to preventable health conditions such as physical activity, smoking, alcohol, obesity, diabetes, heart disease and cancer.
Primary care teams are responsible for carrying out annual physical health checks and follow up care for patients with SMI who are not in contact with secondary care services and patients with SMI who are in contact with secondary care mental health teams, but have been so for more than 12 months and / or whose condition has stabilised.
NHS England has recommended the use of a data entry template to assist GPs and their teams to perform the annual physical health checks so that they are prompted to do a comprehensive review and can easily record their findings.
Clinicians in Bradford, West Yorkshire, have developed such a template in SystmOne and have tested it across their locality. NHS England has encouraged TPP to make the Bradford template available to all SystmOne users.
Below is more information about how you can use the template and what the template looks like.