OPAL- intervention implementation

  • Research type

    Research Study

  • Full title

    One-to-one Peer support for family members and friends of patients treated under the mentAL health act (OPAL) - implementing the intervention



  • Contact name

    Marie McCauley

  • Contact email


  • Sponsor organisation

    Coventry and Warwickshire Partnership NHS Trust

  • Duration of Study in the UK

    1 years, 0 months, 6 days

  • Research summary

    What led to this research?\nPrevious research on experiences of carers of patients treated under the MHA found that most carers reported feeling isolated and unsupported. They need help to overcome feelings of guilt and frustration, and restore relationships with their loved ones and services.\n\nThe recent mental health act (MHA) review recognised the need to support carers during this challenging time. However, there are currently no routinely available services doing this. \n\nWhat will we study?\nA carer peer support intervention in Germany, where carers are trained to support other carers, has been proven effective in reducing caregiving stress and improving quality of life. This intervention has now been adapted for use in England (done in a previous work package for this project: IRAS 302360, see Appendix 1). In this study, we will examine the feasibility of this intervention for carers of patients treated under the MHA.\n \nHow will we study this? \nThe study will be carried out at rural (Warwickshire, Devon) and urban (East London) sites. \n\nThe intervention will be tested in two stages. Stage one training will be delivered to up to eight carer peer supporters (CPSs), who will then support 12 carers. Stage two training will be delivered by the eight trained CPSs to 12 CPSs, who will then support 36 carers. Experiences, costs, engagement of CPSs and carers, quality of life of carers and any adverse events will be assessed.\n\nWhat will the study lead to? \nThe findings of this study will lead to further refinement of the training manual. The findings will also be discussed with key stakeholders (including carers, services users, professionals, policy makers and charities) in a subsequent study who will decide whether the findings lead to immediate roll-out or if more research is required before further implementation. \n

  • REC name

    North of Scotland Research Ethics Committee 2

  • REC reference


  • Date of REC Opinion

    10 Oct 2022

  • REC opinion

    Further Information Favourable Opinion