A new study published in The Lancet finds that compared to a workbook, people who had support from those with first-hand experience of mental health problems themselves were less likely to be readmitted to acute care a year later.

The randomised controlled trial of more than 400 people suggests that care from peer support workers with ‘lived’ experience of mental health conditions may help reduce the likelihood of readmission for people who have recently left acute mental health care.

More than half the people admitted to acute care in the UK are readmitted within a year, and there is no robust evidence on how these readmissions can be reduced: this study is the first randomised trial to evaluate the effectiveness of this kind of intervention.