Complex Needs and Dual Diagnosis factsheet published as a result of ongoing inquiry

News item posted: 17 March 2017

To raise the issue of complex needs on the political agenda and to mark five years since its launch, the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Complex Needs and Dual Diagnosis has been undertaking an inquiry into 'complex needs'.

The APPG on Complex Needs and Dual Diagnosis (APPG) was established in 2007 in recognition of the fact that people seeking help often have a number of over-lapping needs.

Through its work the APPG brings stakeholders together to ensure that this important social issue remains on the political agenda and shapes future government policy. The Group is co-chaired by Lord Victor Adebowale CBE and David Burrowes MP and the secretariat is provided by health and social care organisation Turning Point.

The inquiry, which launched in summer 2013, aims to define complex needs and highlight the barriers and challenges people with complex needs experience as well as showcase examples of good practice where these challenges have been overcome

To date the inquiry has been informed by a survey of over 140 professionals and service users, written evidence submitted to the group and two oral evidence sessions with MPs and Peers. As a result of this, the APPG have published their first factsheet.

Key findings outlined in the factsheet include the following:

• Data on the complex needs people face is not generally recorded by government or shared between commissioners so it is severely lacking.

• Tens of thousands of individuals who would fall under the APPG's definition of complex needs are more likely to experience staggering health inequalities due to the lack of joined up services, access issues and other barriers.

• As a society we often fail to understand and coordinate the support people need, particularly when they find services difficult to engage with.

• This lack of understanding, priority and support leads to people feeling helpless, facing discrimination and even premature death.

Lord Victor Adebowale, Co-Chair of the APPG on Complex Needs and Dual Diagnosis and Chief Executive of Turning Point, said;

"Addressing complex needs must be central to any debate or discussion on health and social care."

"People with complex needs are the litmus test for reforms and we must use this inquiry to push for a greater emphasis from government, those commissioning services and those providing them to improve the way people are supported. We cannot afford to stand still on this. "

The inquiry has a proposed timeframe of 18 months and will continue with interviews and service user workshops over the summer.

ENDS

• The full APPG Factsheet can be accessed on The Turning Point website www.turning-point.co.uk/media/636823/appg_factsheet_1_-_june_2014.pdf

• You can follow the APPG on Complex Needs and Dual Diagnosis on Twitter @APPGComplexNeed

• The All Party Parliamentary Group on Complex needs and Dual Diagnosis was formed in 2007. It provides an opportunity for interested parliamentarians to discuss a range of issues which affect people with complex needs and to help formulate practical proposals. The group aims to meet on a quarterly basis and Turning Point acts as the secretariat.

• If you would like to feed into the inquiry please get in touch with appg@turning-point.co.uk