BABCP Response - NICE Consultation January 2022

£3 Billion Spent On Talking Therapies For No Clear Benefit

when will the Government insist on an independent evaluation of the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies Service? These are the concerns raised in my just published paper ‘Ensuring IAPT Makes A Real-World Difference’ see link

The Key Messages are:

  • Over the last decade over £3billion has been spent on the UK
    Government’s Improving Access to Psychological Treatment
    programme, without any independent assessment of outcome.
    • IAPT claims a 50% recovery rate but other evidence suggests
    that only the tip of the iceberg recover.
    • Expansion of IAPT beyond its remit of depression and anxiety
    disorders should be halted, until it has been demonstrated
    that it adequately performs its’ core task.

Clinical Commissioning Groups are being defrauded by IAPT’s claimed recovery rates

Dr Mike Scott

17 replies on “£3 Billion Spent On Talking Therapies For No Clear Benefit”

Mike, I must disagree with you when you say that IAPT shouldn’t be allowed to expand into MUS and LTC until it has shown that it’s effective for depression and anxiety. IAPT is not appropriate for MUS full-stop. It’s nothing short of evil what is happening in our NHS with this perversion of medicine that is based on misrepresented and poor research. Patients are suffering the most appalling pain and in the most horrific ways in the ‘care’ of doctors who, rather than believe their suffering, are encouraged to practice their armchair psychiatry in order to slash their secondary care budgets. Psychotherapists should protest against this abhorrent (and sexist) MUS construct if they want to maintain patient trust.

Hi liz
I think you have misunderstood me, I was simply saying that a necessary condition for the expansion of IAPT beyond depression and the anxiety disorders is that they demonstrate a 50% recovery rate as assessed by independent assessors. I was not at all saying that even attaining this is a sufficient basis for expansion. I have a paper hopefully coming out very shortly on IAPT and MUS which I think u will appreciate.
Have a really good Christmas


Hi Mike
Thought this would be of interest – Employment Advice in NHS England’s Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) service. This provides evidence-based psychological therapies to people with anxiety and depression. We have tripled the number of employment advisers within IAPT and currently fund these directly in approximately 40% of IAPT services across England. Therapists and employment advisers work together to consider ways to improve mental health, support people to remain in work while receiving treatment, get back to work if off sick or to find work, if out of work. More than half of the people using this service are in work.

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