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Bregtje Kamphuis
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Evidence Review on Mental Wellbeing

Conducted on behalf of: National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE)

Commenced: January 2014

Project context

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has been requested by the Department of Health to develop guidance on public health interventions aimed at promoting the mental wellbeing and independence of older people. The guidance will complement the existing UK and international frameworks which include inter alia:  ‘A public health outcomes framework for England 2013-2016’ (DH 2012), ‘Building resilient communities: Making every contact count for public mental’ (Mental health Foundation/Mind 2013), ‘Care and support bill’ (UK Parliament 2013), and ‘Strategy and action plan for healthy ageing in Europe, 2012–2020’ (World Health Organization 2012). 

In reviewing mental wellbeing, NICE and the LSE team refer to ‘feelings’ (emotional and psychological wellbeing, including self-esteem) and the ability to ‘function’ socially (social wellbeing, including the ability to cope in the face of adversity). Mental wellbeing also includes being able to develop potential, work productively and creatively, build strong and positive relationships with others and contribute to the community (Foresight 2008).

The evidence reviews cover the population groups identified within the scope, with an emphasis on evidence relevant to people aged 65 or over.

Objectives of the project

The work includes three evidence reviews in the following areas:

  1. An evidence review of the effectiveness of interventions to improve or protect the mental wellbeing or independence of older people.
  2. An evidence review of barriers and facilitators to access and uptake of interventions to improve or protect the mental wellbeing or independence of older people. This part includes consideration of inequalities and how these may be addressed.
  3. A review of current UK practice with regard to improving or protecting the mental wellbeing or independence of older people. The review will include consideration of evidence on emerging practice.

Research team

David McDaid is Senior Research Fellow in Health Policy and Health Economics at LSE Health and Social Care and the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies.

Kristian Wahlbeck is a psychiatrist, psychotherapist and a Research Professor at the National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL), Finland.

Anna Forsman is a postdoctoral researcher at the National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) in Finland and at the Nordic School of Public Health NHV in Sweden.

Tihana Matosevic is a Research Fellow at the Personal Social Services Research Unit (PSSRU) based at the LSE.

A-La Park is a health economist at the LSE. 

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