Review: involvement of former or current users of mental health services may improve outcomes in patients with severe mental illness
QUESTION: Does the involvement of former or current users of mental health services in the delivery and evaluation of mental health services improve outcomes in patients with severe mental illness?
Studies were identified by searching Medline, EMBASE/Excerpta Medica, CINAHL, PsycINFO, HealthSTAR, the Cochrane Controlled Trials Register, Web of Science, HMIC, and BIDS (all from 1966 to October 2001). Bibliographies of relevant articles were reviewed, and experts and relevant organisations were contacted for unpublished studies.
Studies were selected if they were randomised controlled trials (RCTs), controlled clinical trials (CCTs), or descriptive studies in which current or former users of mental health services with serious psychiatric illness (schizophrenia or bipolar disorder) participated in the design and data collection process of mental health service evaluation. Studies were also selected if users trained mental health professionals or if services were integrated by health professionals working together with users in a team.
Data were extracted on the mechanism of involving users, including support available; number of users involved and diagnoses; service or setting of involvement; study design; sample size; and all measures …