Sheffield researchers have found that over half of NHS patients experience a relapse after being discharged from mental health care within a year of treatment.
The study revealed 53 per cent of NHS patients had a clinically significant deterioration of depression and anxiety symptoms within a year after completing brief psychological treatments.
A total of 439 patients, who were considered to have recovered from their symptoms, took part in the study.
Over half of these were found to have suffered a relapse event, with up to 79 per cent of events occurring within the first six months after treatment.
The study was conducted by a team of NHS clinicians and scientists from the Universities of Sheffield, York, Huddersfield and Trier.
Dr Jaime Delgadillo, from the University of Sheffield, said: “These findings underline the importance of monitoring patients’ wellbeing for at least six months after treatment and offering adequate support to ensure they stay well.
"We argue that relapse prevention is a crucial but often neglected aspect of psychological care in the NHS.
“Incomplete or insufficient treatment also costs the NHS, as patients who relapse often need further care or support.”