Novel psychoactive treatment: UK network (NEPTUNE)

Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust

  • Project led by Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust.
  • Based in the Club Drugs Clinic.
  • Aimed to address the gap in experience and knowledge in the management of acute and chronic problems resulting from the use of club drugs and novel psychoactive substances (NPS).
  • Established a UK-wide clinical community of professionals and service users with expertise in club drugs and NPS, and developed clinical guidelines and care bundles.

The Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust project established a UK-wide community of professionals and service users with expertise in club drugs and novel psychoactive substances (NPS).

The aim was to address the gap in experience and knowledge in the management of acute and chronic problems resulting from the use of these drugs.

The project involved:

  • building a clinical community and a guideline group
  • developing clinical guidelines
  • developing, testing and evaluating the care bundles
  • developing a national dissemination strategy.

The care bundles and guidelines were designed to support busy clinicians to deliver safe and that treatment is delivered in a consistent and safe way. The guidelines provided advice on topics including harm reduction, interventions, service models, and psychological and pharmacological treatments.

Who was involved

The project was based in the trust's Club Drugs Clinic and was led by a consultant psychiatrist who was also lead clinicial for the clinic. The project team included service users and NPS experts as well as commissioners, academics and people with expertise in areas such as health economics, communication and health care management and policy.

The care bundles were tested at three emergency departments, three drug services and three shared primary care sites.

Impact

  • Emergency department doctors used the care bundle in 100% of cases.
  • Bundle uptake by patients was 100%.
  • Improvements in the percentage of patients who successfully completed treatment and patients who stayed in treatment until mutually agreed discharge.

Challenges

The team undertook an extensive literature review prior to developing the guidance. This took longer than expected, especially as new drugs continued to emerge during the project.

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