The Department has not directly monitored the implementation of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence’s (NICE) clinical guidelines on depression. Healthcare organisations’ compliance with NICE guidelines is part of the developmental standard D2 which is being assessed in shadow form in the Healthcare Commission’s annual health check of mental health trusts in 2006-07. This means that assessment of performance against developmental standard D2 will not feed into the overall annual rating in 2006-07. However, it is expected to form part of the rating from 2007-08.
In May 2006, the Department embarked on the improving access to psychological therapies programme which is intended to increase the availability of evidence based psychological therapies and help full implementation of the NICE clinical guidelines on depression.