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The Royal College of Psychiatrists
Electroconvulsive Therapy Accreditation Service

ECTAS started in 1983 - organised through the Royal College of Psychiatrists, it comprises two parts.
Firstly it has consulted on, and revised, a list of standards to be upheld by ECT departments. These standards are graded 1 through 3.
Any standard graded 1 must be met for the service to be accreditable by the College. Its has been a complicated task and some of the standards will be further refined. However as they exist, the form a useful measure against which to evaluate an ECT service. Potential service users reading this might like to look at the standards so they know what questions to ask of their own services when the subject of ECT arises? Standard level 2 are desirable standards and level 3 are likely to be found in an excellent service.
Further details of ECTAS are fully explained in this downloadable PDF here but full details are available on their website
The ECTAS website is on
The ECTAS standards (Dec 04) are available as a downloadable PDF (this link will break if a newer version is issued*)
The second part is the provsion for services to 'self evaluate' for a three month period, after which they receive an accrediation visit from a psychiatrist, a nurse and an anaesthetist. This panel look at the areas of the self report that might prevent full accrediation. This panel reports back to the College who then, if satisfied as to standards, will issue accreditation for a period of three years (subject to annual self review). Over 30 units have sought accreditation so far, about a third have had accreditation delayed for a variety of reasons.

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