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      Where there is no evidence: implementing family interventions from recommendations in the NICE guideline 11 on challenging behaviour in a South African health service for adults with intellectual disability


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          Low- and middle-income countries often lack the fiscal, infrastructural and human resources to conduct evidence-based research; similar constraints may also hinder the application of good clinical practice guidelines based on research findings from high-income countries. While the context of health organizations is increasingly recognized as an important consideration when such guidelines are implemented, there is a paucity of studies that have considered local contexts of resource-scarcity against recommended clinical guidelines.


          This paper sets out to explore the implementation of the NICE Guideline 11 on family interventions when working with persons with intellectual disability and challenging behavior by a group of psychologists employed in a government health facility in Cape Town, South Africa.


          In the absence of evidence-based South African research, we argue that aspects of the guidelines, in particular those that informed our ethos and conceptual thinking, could be applied by clinical psychologists in a meaningful manner notwithstanding the relative scarcity of resources.


          We have argued that where guidelines such as the NICE Guidelines do not apply contextually throughout, it remains important to retain the principles behind these guidelines in local contexts. Limitations of this study exist in that the data were drawn only from the clinical experience of authors. Some of the implications for future research in resource-constrained contexts such as ours are discussed. Smaller descriptive, qualitative studies are necessary to explore the contextual limitations and resource strengths that exist in low- and middle-income settings, and these studies should be more systematic than drawing only on the clinical experience of authors, as has been done in this study.

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          The Lancet Commission on global mental health and sustainable development

          The Lancet, 392(10157), 1553-1598
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            The Role of Communities in Mental Health Care in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: A Meta-Review of Components and Competencies

            Community-based mental health services are emphasized in the World Health Organization’s Mental Health Action Plan, the World Bank’s Disease Control Priorities, and the Action Plan of the World Psychiatric Association. There is increasing evidence for effectiveness of mental health interventions delivered by non-specialists in community platforms in low- and middle-income countries (LMIC). However, the role of community components has yet to be summarized. Our objective was to map community interventions in LMIC, identify competencies for community-based providers, and highlight research gaps. Using a review-of-reviews strategy, we identified 23 reviews for the narrative synthesis. Motivations to employ community components included greater accessibility and acceptability compared to healthcare facilities, greater clinical effectiveness through ongoing contact and use of trusted local providers, family involvement, and economic benefits. Locations included homes, schools, and refugee camps, as well as technology-aided delivery. Activities included awareness raising, psychoeducation, skills training, rehabilitation, and psychological treatments. There was substantial variation in the degree to which community components were integrated with primary care services. Addressing gaps in current practice will require assuring collaboration with service users, utilizing implementation science methods, creating tools to facilitate community services and evaluate competencies of providers, and developing standardized reporting for community-based programs.
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              Global research challenges and opportunities for mental health and substance-use disorders

              The research agenda for global mental health and substance-use disorders has been largely driven by the exigencies of high health burdens and associated unmet needs in low- and middle-income countries. Implementation research focused on context-driven adaptation and innovation in service delivery has begun to yield promising results that are improving the quality of, and access to, care in low-resource settings. Importantly, these efforts have also resulted in the development and augmentation of local, in-country research capacities. Given the complex interplay between mental health and substance-use disorders, medical conditions, and biological and social vulnerabilities, a revitalized research agenda must encompass both local variation and global commonalities in the impact of adversities, multi-morbidities and their consequences across the life course. We recommend priorities for research – as well as guiding principles for context-driven, intersectoral, integrative approaches – that will advance knowledge and answer the most pressing local and global mental health questions and needs, while also promoting a health equity agenda and extending the quality, reach and impact of scientific enquiry.

                Author and article information

                +2782459355 , Lswartz@sun.ac.za
                BMC Health Serv Res
                BMC Health Serv Res
                BMC Health Services Research
                BioMed Central (London )
                13 March 2019
                13 March 2019
                : 19
                : 162
                [1 ]ISNI 0000 0004 0635 1506, GRID grid.413335.3, Department of Psychiatry and Mental Health, , University of Cape Town, J-Block, Groote Schuur Hospital, ; Observatory, Cape Town, 7925 South Africa
                [2 ]ISNI 0000 0001 2214 904X, GRID grid.11956.3a, Alan J Flisher Centre for Public Mental Health, Department of Psychology, , Stellenbosch University, ; Private Bag X1, Matieland, 7602 South Africa
                Author information
                © The Author(s). 2019

                Open AccessThis article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

                : 23 August 2017
                : 7 March 2019
                Funded by: National Research Foundation (South Africa)
                Award ID: 85423
                Award Recipient :
                Research Article
                Custom metadata
                © The Author(s) 2019

                Health & Social care
                intellectual disability,challenging behaviour,nice guidelines,low-income contexts


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