, Volume 4, Issue 3, pp 246-254,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

The Implementation of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy: Learning From the UK Health Service Experience

Abstract

Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) is an effective depression prevention programme for people with a history of recurrent depression. In the UK, the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) has suggested that MBCT is a priority for implementation. This paper explores the exchange, synthesis and application of evidence and guidance on MBCT between the academic settings generating the evidence and delivering practitioner training and the practice settings where implementation takes place. Fifty-seven participants in a workshop on MBCT implementation in the NHS were asked for their experience of facilitators and obstacles to implementation, and a UK-wide online survey of 103 MBCT teachers and stakeholders was conducted. While MBCT is starting to become available in the NHS, this is rarely part of a strategic, coherent or appropriately resourced approach. A series of structural, political cultural, educational, emotional and physical/technological obstacles and facilitators to implementation were identified. Nearly a decade since NICE first recommended MBCT, only a small number of mental health services in the UK have systematically implemented the guidance. Guiding principles for implementation are set out. We offer an implementation resource to facilitate the transfer of MBCT knowledge into action.

Rebecca S Crane and Willem Kuyken contributed equally to this work.