This protocol is for Research Question 2 (RQ2) of a rapid evidence review that has been commissioned by WWCSC into mental health provision and interventions for care leavers.
Research has found the support for the emotional wellbeing of care-experienced young people (CEYP) is inconsistent and insufficient. With a transition out of care, young people have found that they are no longer eligible for support from mental health services, despite research showing a clear deterioration in mental health in their first year of leaving care. Over the last decade, there has also been an emergence of co-designed innovations in youth mental health care, including services which span a transitional age range from approximately 12-25 years. However, it is not clear whether these innovative approaches have been implemented with CEYP in mind, and there is also a gap for young people’s voices in terms of how to implement effective services.
This protocol details the qualitative evidence synthesis, which is linked with the intervention effect review.
This review will identify and summarise the experiences with the implementation of mental health services for CEYP in the UK, drawing upon qualitative (and if relevant, quantitative) research findings.
The intervention effect review looks at the international literature on the effectiveness of interventions to improve the mental health of care-experienced young people whereas this review looks at experiences with mental health provision in the UK context to create greater understanding around access, design, and acceptability, appropriateness and fit of provision – no matter its effectiveness – in the UK context. The effective review works to aggregate quantitative knowledge on the topic, whereas this review looks to configure understanding on experiences.
The research question for the qualitative evidence review is:
- What are the experiences with the implementation of mental health services for CEYP in the UK?
Secondary research questions are:
- What are the barriers and facilitators for accessing mental health services for CEYP, including equity in access?
- What are the barriers and facilitators in successfully engaging and continuing with mental health services for CEYP after access?
- What do we know about the acceptability, appropriateness, and fit of mental health services for CEYP (e.g., viewpoints on targeted versus universal services, preferences on the points of delivery)?
This protocol contains references to subject matters such as self-harm and suicide which some readers may find distressing.
Both reviews will be completed by December 2022.