Mental illness is something 1 in four people in the UK will experience over the course of a single year, yet it is a subject that is seldom spoken about.
The most common conditions people report struggling with are generalized anxiety disorder, post- traumatic stress disorder, depression and obsessive compulsive disorder.
Although the number of people living with mental health issues has not changed dramatically in recent years problems like unemployment, debt and family breakdown can make it harder for people to cope.
Currently 1 in 8 adults with a mental health condition are receiving treatment, accessing services can be a difficult, confusing and stressful experience in its own right.
North Staffordshire Clinical Commissioning Group has, through its Patient’s Congress set up a citizen’s jury to look into access to adult mental health services in the area it serves.
The jury will produce a written report in the autumn and this will be used to improve local services. As part of their evidence gathering they have produced an online survey, a link to which is included below.
By setting up this initiative the CCG has taken a huge step towards bringing mental health out of the shadow of irrational stigma and provided an opportunity for service users, carers and family members to have a meaningful say on service delivery.