1. Why are we developing the iapt for smi project and what are its aims?

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IAPT for Severe Mental Illness Project FAQ's

1. Why are we developing the IAPT for SMI project and what are its aims?

The Severe Mental Illness (IAPT for SMI) project aims to improve access to a range of NICE recommended psychological therapies for those with psychosis, bipolar disorder and personality disorders. The ultimate long-term ambition of the IAPT for SMI project will be to ensure that psychological therapies are available as a frontline treatment for everyone with psychosis, bipolar or personality disorders who could benefit from evidence based psychological therapies has access to these interventions.

2. Which organisations have been selected as IAPT for SMI Demonstration Sites


Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust

James Kelly, Clinical Psychologist: IAPT.SMI@lancashirecare.nhs.uk

South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust

Dr Louise Johns, Consultant Clinical Psychologist: louise.johns@slam.nhs.uk

Bipolar Disorder Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Foundation Trust and Spectrum will be working in partnership on Bipolar Disorder

Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Foundation Trust

Dr Amanda Gatherer, Director of Psychological Services & Head of Psychology: amanda.gatherer@bsmhft.nhs.uk

Spectrum Centre for Mental Health Research - Lancaster University

Steve Jones, Director of Spectrum Centre for Mental Health Research: s.jones7@lancaster.ac.uk

Personality Disorder

Somerset Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

Chris Gordon, Clinical Manager PD Service: PDService@sompar.nhs.uk

North East London NHS Foundation Trust:

Dr. Janet Feigenbaum - Strategic and Clinical Lead for Personality Disorder Services


Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health NHS Trust

Professor Anthony Bateman - Clinical Lead: abateman@nhs.net

2. Are the IAPT for SMI Demonstration Sites an expansion of IAPT services?

The IAPT for SMI project is a transformational project that looks to work with existing IAPT services and established secondary care mental health providers to improve access to psychological therapies for people with severe mental illnesses.  IAPT for SMI Demonstration Sites were selected as they had developed a systematic approach to the delivery of NICE recommended psychological therapies for psychosis, bipolar disorder and/or personality disorder and were able to demonstrate improved access to these interventions compared with the national average.

3. How long are the Demonstration Sites scheduled for?

The Demonstration Sites run from the 1st November 2012 through to 31st March 2016.

4. Which conditions and therapies are included in the IAPT for SMI project?

The IAPT for SMI project is aimed at individuals presenting with Psychosis, Personality Disorder (PD) and Bipolar Disorder (BD) who could benefit from the following NICE recommended psychological therapies for: 


  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

  • Family interventions

Bipolar Disorderii

For Personality Disorder the evidence base is more challenging and NICE recommends the context in which people are treated is as important as the delivery of evidence based therapies. NICE guidance currently available recommends the following:

Borderline Personality Disorderiii

It does not advocate the use of brief interventions with this client group.

Anti-social Personality Disorderiv

  • Group based CBT for impulsivity, interpersonal difficulties and antisocial behaviour.

  • Reasoning and rehabilitation programme for offenders

5. Collection of outcome data

IAPT for SMI Demonstration sites are required to collect sessional data to support the evaluation of service user recovery, satisfaction and health utilisation.  The learning from these sites will be used to develop a Minimum Data Set for SMI services providing psychological therapies

i NICE Clinical guideline, (CG 178, 2014)

ii NICE Clinical guideline, (CG38, 2006)

iii NICE Clinical guideline, (CG78, 2009)

iv NICE Clinical guideline, (CG77, 2009)

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