"Concerns about my wife's treatment"

About: Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust / Adult mental health

(as a relative),

I am concerned about the care my wife is receiving for her depression. I am a mental health professional in a Trust in another county so feel I am making valid comments on her treatment.

She has a diagnosis of severe depression and her medication was increased 5 weeks ago. She is now, in my opinion, over medicated - drowsy and very over sedated. If I was treating a patient in this state I would be asking for a medication review. This has not been done in my wife's case because no-one has seen her since the medication increase to check how she is responding to the increase in medication. I note that Lincolnshire Partnership Foundation Trust has stated they are fully compliant with NICE guidelines - these state

"For people started on antidepressants who are not considered to be at increased risk of suicide, normally see them after 2 weeks. See them regularly thereafter, for example at intervals of 2 to 4 weeks in the first 3 months, and then at longer intervals if response is good."

They are, it appears, in this instance not compliant in this important area.

My wife has also continually requested CBT for her depression but has continually been refused it - again this is not showing compliance with NICE guidelines.

I feel strongly that the care she is being given would not be acceptable where I work .

If LPFT are declaring complaince with NICE guidelines should they not be making sure their staff are doing so?

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Response from Caroline Hainsworth, Service Liaison Manager, Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

Thank you for sharing your experience with us. It is of great concern that you or your wife has not been able to discuss a medication review or treatment options with her care team and I would urge you to raise this with them.

Alternatively, if you contact the Complaints Dept on 01529 222266 we can investigate your concerns appropriately on your wife's behalf to ensure that the most appropriate treatment is provided.

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Update posted by tam2 (a relative)

We spoke to a member of the team and were given an appointment with the psychiatrist. We have just been told this has been cancelled and she cannot be seen for another 5 months. So apparently it is good practice for the trust to double a patients medication then leave them over 6 months before reviewing whether there are any side effects or it is working.

Her GP will not see her as they referred her to the mental health trust in the first place because they did not know how to treat her and they say it is up to the Trust to follow up and review her medication.

Looks like she is on an ineffective drug, with bad side effects for the next 5 months then and no way of getting any help.