Mental health chief executives are increasingly confident this month that they will achieve financial balance.

Mental health chief executives are increasingly confident this month that they will achieve financial balance. Their rating of commissioners is up too, but remains low - this will be a score to watch as new primary care trusts bed in.

Confidence that foundation trust status will be achieved by the end of 2006-07 has hit a new low, although chief executives are more hopeful about reaching this status by 2008.

Four other key scores are all up: the recruitment of early intervention teams, implementing the minimum data set and the care programme approach, and reaching standards on cleanliness. Chief executives are confident they will find enough nurses and therapists but increasingly doubt there will be enough doctors. There is also little confidence that payment by results will be success-fully implemented in mental health.

The next Barometer of mental health chief executives will appear in February.