By Dr Sarah Markham
As someone with years of experience of being detained and/or restricted under various sections of the Mental Health Act (MHA), Theresa May’s commitment to address ‘the burning injustice of mental illness’ was very welcome news. The MHA Review is being chaired by Prof Sir Simon Wessely who has been very forthright in his criticism of the mental health care system, stating that the current environment “could hardly be designed worse” to assist recovery.
The Interim Report of the Review was published in May, drawing evidence from national service user and carer surveys, focus groups, stakeholder workshops, and a call for evidence together with wider discussions with organisations and professionals. The report doesn’t hold back in stating the extent of the suffering experienced by people detained by mental health under the MHA.
Prof Sir Simon Wessely has been very forthright in his criticism of the mental health care system, stat...
Securing employment for offenders with mental health problems 24 November 2010
For people with a history of offending, one of the most effective ways of preventing reoffending and improving their chances of leading a better life is likely to be finding and keeping a job. However, only a small proportion of prisoners in England have jobs to go to on release and employment support offered in the criminal justice system is too often denied to offenders with mental health problems.
It is possible to support people with mental health problems and offending histories into mainstream employment, from whichever part of the criminal justice system they are in. This paper provides a summary of the findings from an 18 month employment of offenders partnership programme and explores the elements of effective practice. It sets out the five key elements we have identified with examples of how they have been used in practice. Audience: local commissioners, employment services, criminal justice a...
Social media interact with young people’s mental health and wellbeing in many ways that need to be better understood if we are to help young people to navigate the challenges of twenty-first century life, according to a briefing published today by Centre for Mental Health.
The briefing paper, Social media, young people and mental health, looks at evidence about the impact of social media use on the mental health of young people. It finds that while many studies have focused on the risks and potential harm caused by social media use, there is also evidence of potential benefits. And only by building a three-dimensional picture of the many ways young people interact with social media will we be able to reduce the risks and make the most of the opportunities they present.
The briefing notes that the potential risks to wellbeing include addiction or dependency on social media, often as a substitute for other kinds of social interaction, unhelpful comparisons and jealousy, and bully...
By Rhys Edmonds
The rapid growth of social media over the last decade has established an entirely new medium for human interaction. Online platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram have allowed people in every corner of the world to be connected 24/7. By 2021, it is forecast that there will be around 3 billion active monthly users of social media. From the statistics alone, it’s clear that social media has become an integral (and to a large extent, unavoidable) part of our lives.
One implication of social media’s rapid rise, that of its relationship with young people’s mental health, has gathered a significant amount of attention in recent years. Research has created a wide evidence-base supporting an association between social media use and mental health, and although still emerging, new evidence has painted a broad picture of the main impacts. The popularity of social media as a medium of communication for young people needs to be carefully examined, as ...
18 September 2018
The rise of social media, and its impact upon young people's mental health, has become a hotly debated topic over the past few years. Combined with a fear about cyber bullying and an increase in young people self-harming, social media has become the latest focus of public concern for mental health.
This briefing paper offers a brief scan of the latest evidence on the impact of social media on young people's wellbeing, both negative and positive. It seeks to understand what constitutes ‘problematic’ social media use, including addiction, jealousy and 'fear of missing out', as well as looking at how social media can positively impact on wellbeing.
This report is free to download here
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10 September 2018
In June this year, the Prime Minister Theresa May pledged a long term settlement for the NHS, and chose mental health as one of the key priority areas to receive sustained funding. Since this announcement, NHS England have approached many organisations with expertise in mental health, including the Centre, inviting us to share our views on what should be prioritised in the upcoming long-term plan for mental health.
Our response is based on research the Centre has carried out in recent years, and builds on our report to the Mental Health Taskforce, Priorities for Mental Health.
Read our response in full here.
By Harry Palmer
Earlier today, Combat Stress announced the findings of their year-long tele-therapy pilot. Funded by the Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT), the pilot trialled the impact of tele-therapy (therapeutic interventions for mental health conditions via electronic remote mediums, in this case over Skype) for veterans with mental health difficulties.
The potential of this work is profound, aiming to tackle a range of barriers that prevent a veteran from seeking the help they need from mental health services. Veterans, like the rest of the population, experience a number of barriers that can stop them from accessing the support they need. This can be in the form of practical barriers, such as the inability to get the time off work to attend therapy sessions, to a lack of understanding of where to turn next, through to stigma-related barriers, where the veteran does not want to be seen as needing help. It is hoped that the findings of this project can begin to influence and chan...
Individual Placement and Support (IPS) has been internationally recognised as the most effective method of supporting people with severe mental illness into sustainable, competitive employment.
Employment specialists in UK IPS Centres of Excellence successfully support 50% of clients into paid employment; irrespective of the severity of their diagnosis or additional substance misuse.
This two day training course is ideal for employment specialists who want to use IPS principles to increase paid job outcomes for people with mental health conditions.
The training will cover:
The eight principles of IPS
Marketing the IPS service
The research evidence for the effectiveness of IPS
Working with the NHS clinical teams to obtain referrals
Integrating the clinical and employment teams
Providing benefits advice
Vocational profiling and ongoing assessment
Vocational action planning with the service user
Collaborating with other employment agencies
Developing relationships with pote...
5 September 2018
Does the 'Coping Through Football' programme deliver benefits to the physical and mental health of people living with mental health difficulties?
This report is the culmination of two years of research led by Dr Oliver Mason of UCL on the Coping Through Football project. Centre for Mental Health provided the economic analysis of the programmes costs and benefits.
Coping Through Football was founded by London Playing Fields Foundation, who started the initiative in 2005 in collaboration with North East London Foundation Trust and Leyton Orient Trust. It was conceived in response to the fact that the biggest cause of death of 20-49 year old men was suicide and that given that community mental health services were stretched to the limit, there was an over reliance on medication as a treatment.
The report finds that for two out of three participants (39% of whom have schizophrenia) there was a positive change in lifestyle choices around healthy eating and smo...