Feature Interview

Simon Wessely: “Every time we have a mental health awareness week my spirits sink”

BMJ 2017; 358 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.j4305 (Published 21 September 2017) Cite this as: BMJ 2017;358:j4305

Re: Simon Wessely: “Every time we have a mental health awareness week my spirits sink”

How refreshing to see an article that addresses some of the issues that face mental health.
--- overmedicalisation of normal Human distress
----separation of psychiatry care from physical care when mortality gap in psychiatry patients is 20 Years, with other population is attributed to physical Health disease.
--- issues around recruitment that arise from Above.

The over emphasis on the fleeting distress and acopia which neglects the severe mental illness: brain disorders which lead to poor outcomes and where consultants should be putting in their expertise.

As a liaison psychiatrist integrated into an acute trust, reintegration helps addresses many of these.
---medical students and foundation doctors see psychiatrists and understand the specialty better.
---patients get integrated care.
---stigma is addressed and education about identifying mental disorders which are often missed whilst medicalising normal distress is addressed.

The lack of physical health training in mental health nursing is also a huge contributor.

Competing interests: No competing interests

11 October 2017
Anne Abe
Psychiatrist
Southampton