Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

Service user perspectives of an early intervention in psychosis service: a service evaluation

Watkins, Simon; Sanderson, Chris; Richards, Victoria


Simon Watkins

Chris Sanderson

Victoria Richards


This evaluation aimed to gather the perspectives of individuals accessing an early intervention in psychosis service (EIPS), in order to inform service development.

Individual interviews (n=9) and one focus group (n=7) were conducted. Discussions focused on open questions pertaining to Service Users’ (SUs) experiences of accessing the EIPS. The results were analysed using inductive thematic analysis.

Inductive thematic analysis was used and three main themes were generated; Consistency and Communication, facilitating therapeutic relationships between EIP service staff and SU’s. Pushing Boundaries, relating to the importance of services taking a graded approach to developing therapeutic relationships and (re)engaging in activities; and Normalising and Validating experiences of psychosis.

Participants emphasised the importance of relationships with EIP service staff and fellow SUs and highlighted how SUs can feel fearful and vulnerable when staff are not accessible or they view their care as inconsistent. Participants further emphasised the need for practitioners to balance an approach that de-stigmatises psychotic experiences whilst validating distress.

Consistency of support from EIP services can be as important as flexibility. Clinicians should carefully consider the balance between validating and normalising distressing experiences associated with Psychosis. Offering social activities with other SUs can facilitate therapeutic relationships and recovery but the results suggest that this should be facilitated in a graded way.


Watkins, S., Sanderson, C., & Richards, V. (2018). Service user perspectives of an early intervention in psychosis service: a service evaluation. Mental Health Review Journal, 23(3), 156-164.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Apr 17, 2018
Online Publication Date Jul 10, 2018
Publication Date Sep 10, 2018
Deposit Date Jul 20, 2018
Publicly Available Date Oct 27, 2022
Print ISSN 1361-9322
Publisher Emerald
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 23
Issue 3
Pages 156-164
Keywords Early intervention services; Peer support; Service user perspectives; First episode of psychosis; Normalising
Public URL
Publisher URL


You might also like

Downloadable Citations