Perinatal mental health is a major concern among women of childbearing age. Women from a black and minority ethnic background are widely believed to have particular needs…
Perinatal mental health is a major concern among women of childbearing age. Women from a black and minority ethnic background are widely believed to have particular needs that are often not given the attention they deserve. NHS Croydon launched a perinatal mental health project to develop a closer and better partnership between the Primary Care Trust (PCT), Croydon Council and black and minority ethnic (BME) voluntary organisations through an action learning approach. Experience was shared to improve engagement and use of health services by mothers from BME communities in Croydon who had encountered mental health problems during pregnancy or following childbirth. By exploring and identifying such issues and problems, the action learning set endeavoured to find solutions for a joined‐up approach to achieve identifiable benefits. Some problems were encountered, such as a lack of communication between health professionals and BME community groups. The learning outcomes were to raise awareness and to recognise the cultural differences with mothers of BME background experiencing perinatal mental health problems. The learning from the project will be disseminated to a wider audience to promote best practice.
The European Commission adopted its green paper on mental health on 14 October 2005, taking forward the Mental Health Declaration and Action Plan for Europe endorsed by…
The European Commission adopted its green paper on mental health on 14 October 2005, taking forward the Mental Health Declaration and Action Plan for Europe endorsed by the 52 member states of the WHO European region at the WHO Ministerial Conference on Mental Health in Helsinki in January 2005. Monika Kosinska interviews Jürgen Scheftlein, project and policy officer at the European Commission Directorate General for Health and Consumer Protection, who drafted the paper, about its implications for member states.
Mental health promotion is a relatively new, evolving and very exciting area of public health. The challenge for mental health promotion in Australia is ‘weaving its many…
Mental health promotion is a relatively new, evolving and very exciting area of public health. The challenge for mental health promotion in Australia is ‘weaving its many threads’ through the various areas of mental health policy, programs and service delivery.
Now in its third year, The Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival is fast becoming a significant cultural annual event, which aims to achieve social change through…
Now in its third year, The Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival is fast becoming a significant cultural annual event, which aims to achieve social change through the arts. Through innovative programming of arts events, the Festival explores the relationship between mental health and creativity, celebrates the artistic achievements of people with experience of mental health issues, and promotes positive mental health and well‐being. It aims to promote the rights and recovery of people who experience mental ill health, while exploring mental health and inequalities that affect us all. The multi‐arts Festival focuses on audiences' existing interests in film, theatre, comedy, music, literature and visual arts to tackle stigma and engage people.
The purpose of this case study is to describe the experiences of a development organization operating in Africa to make mental health services accessible to communities in…
The purpose of this case study is to describe the experiences of a development organization operating in Africa to make mental health services accessible to communities in Kenya and Uganda through partnerships. The lessons that can be learnt from this work are also considered.
The paper is a case study that builds on operations research gathered over five to seven years by the authors who have managed the country mental health programmes in Uganda and Kenya. The case study describes the problem of mental illness and its magnitude in Kenya and Uganda, and why it is important that this is addressed. Existing mechanisms in place and gaps in current service provision are also discussed.
Methods used to address gaps in current service provision include capacitating different service providers, their roles and their contribution to community mental health. The inclusion and training of non‐psychiatrists can contribute to the management, treatment and recovery of people with mental health problems in African communities.
The case study is limited in its applicability in full to other low to middle income countries (LMICs). Causality cannot be established between improvement in access and training of the different health service providers.
The case study gives practical experiences that practitioners in LMICs can further test in improving access to community‐based mental health services. These experiences can help to form a promising practice in how LMICs can reduce health workforce gaps in mental health and planners can consider using this to reduce such gaps.
The case study shows how the participation of service users and other stakeholders and using family resources can bring ownership and sustainability of mental health care at the community level.
The case study adds value to practice and social development theories and models of care.
There are significant inequalities in mental health, with mental health problems and poor mental health more common in areas of deprivation. Current policy in Scotland…
There are significant inequalities in mental health, with mental health problems and poor mental health more common in areas of deprivation. Current policy in Scotland acknowledges the impact of social and environmental factors on community mental health and well‐being and the need for public mental health to engage with regeneration initiatives. This study, based in a low‐income community in east Glasgow, assesses what factors influence community mental health and well‐being and how to develop par tnerships to address these issues. It involved a workshop with community planning agencies and residents' groups in east Glasgow, an action research project with local residents and a validation event with local residents. The study found that social circumstances influenced mental health and well‐being, with people having concerns about their neighbourhood and environment, with antisocial behaviour emerging as a major factor contributing to residents feeling unsafe, isolated and unhappy living in the area. At the same time, residents talked a lot about how happy they felt about the community they were par t of and the impor tant role that social capital can play in low‐income areas in promoting well‐being. The study also highlights the need for par tnerships between health and other sectors and the impor tance of ensuring multi‐agency working that embeds public mental health within the agendas of housing and regeneration sectors. Finally, it demonstrates that action research between par tner agencies and communities will be more effective in identifying key issues and that within such a process, there is more likely to be ‘buy in’ from these agencies to bring about social change.
This article suggests some dilemmas in producing local mental health promotion strategies, as experienced by a mental health promotion specialist in England. It argues…
This article suggests some dilemmas in producing local mental health promotion strategies, as experienced by a mental health promotion specialist in England. It argues that, because of the misconceptions and misunderstandings associated with mental health and mental health promotion (MHP), some groundwork is needed to communicate a common and clear understanding. The author explains how she has communicated MHP among organisations in her locality. This includes exploring definitions of mental health and its relationship to mental illness, the rationale and effectiveness of promoting mental health and the use of a framework to plan or assess mental health promotion.