The use of ‘routine outcome monitoring’ (ROM) in mental health care has increased widely during the past decade. However, little is known about the use of ROM outcome in daily clinical practice. We investigated to what extent ROM results were reflected in psychotic patients’ treatment plans.
The ROM-Phamous, a ROM-protocol for patients with psychotic disorders in which data is collected on the basis of interviews, questionnaires and physical examination was implemented in the northern Netherlands. A random sample of 100 patients was extracted from the 2010 ROM database (n = 1040), from which we determined the prevalence of a number of problem areas. We then investigated whether these problems were reflected in patients’ treatment plans.
The sample consisted of 63 men and 37 women, with a mean age of 44 years and a mean duration of illness of 18 years. The prevalence of symptoms and psychosocial problems was 13–37%; the prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors was 11–86%. The majority of problems identified with ROM were not reflected in patients’ treatment plans; the opposite also occurred: psychosocial problems, in particular, mentioned in the treatment plans were not always identified with ROM.
ROM and treatment should ideally be integrated in mental-health services, but currently appear to be separate processes. If improvement of integration of ROM and clinical practice succeeds it could lead to improvement of care for psychiatric patients. Further investigation is warranted. Conflict of interest and financial support: ICMJE forms provided by the authors are available online along with the full text of this article.