NICE Suicide Prevention Quality Standard Consultation – CWU Response
The CWU has submitted a written response to the UK National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) consultation on Suicide Prevention Quality Standards, a copy of which is attached for the information of Representatives, Branches and Regions.
The NICE suicide prevention quality standard will cover ways to reduce suicide, with an emphasis on local organisations combining their expertise and resources to implement a range of suicide prevention measures. Consultation responses will feed in to the development of the standard, which is expected to be published in September 2019.
We were very pleased to be able to participate in the Consultation and be putting forward a Trade Union voice, not commonly heard in NICE Consultations.
The NEC and the Mental Health Strategy Project Working Group believe this submission comes at an appropriate time as the Union continues to develop its Mental Health Strategy and following the carriage of Motion 1 at CWU General Conference 2019 on workplace suicide, which called for a campaign to:
- ensure that workplace suicide is recognised in legislation; and
- place the burden of proof on the employer to demonstrate that the suicide was not work-related.
We hope that NICE will take on board the comments from the CWU in drafting the quality standards, particularly as the CWU’s submission highlights the absence of employers and trade unions in the draft suicide prevention quality standard, and argues that employers and unions should be involved in supporting multi-agency suicide prevention partnerships.
The CWU Mental Health Strategy Project Team agreed the CWU should respond to this consultation which was endorsed by the NEC. The response has been a joint piece of work between the Research Department and the Health, Safety & Environment Department before submission via the General Secretary.
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE)
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) is an executive non-departmental public body of the Department of Health in the United Kingdom, which provides national guidance and advice to improve health and social care. It publishes guidelines in four areas:- (a) the use of health technologies within the National Health Service (NHS) (such as the use of new and existing medicines, treatments and procedures) (b) clinical practice (guidance on the appropriate treatment and care of people with specific diseases and conditions) (c) guidance for public sector workers on health promotion and ill-health avoidance (d) guidance for social care services and users. Essential information is produced for key groups including NHS, GPs, local government, public health professionals and members of the public. The Institute aims to determine the clinical effectiveness of interventions and to help achieve improvements in the quality and delivery of health care. NICE appraisals are based primarily on evaluations of efficacy and cost-effectiveness in various circumstances. NICE was also established in an attempt to end the so-called postcode lottery of healthcare where treatments that were available depended upon the NHS Health Authority area in which the patient happened to live, but it has since acquired a high reputation internationally as a role model for the development of clinical guidelines.
National Health, Safety & Environment Officer