The National Forum   Donate   Your Account   On Line Opinion   Forum   Blogs   Polling   About   
The Forum - On Line Opinion's article discussion area



Syndicate
RSS/XML


RSS 2.0

Main Articles General

Sign In      Register

The Forum > Article Comments > Mental health - itís time for a new paradigm > Comments

Mental health - itís time for a new paradigm : Comments

By Vern Hughes, published 10/10/2005

Vern Hughes argues mental health patients and carers must work together with politicians to develop a new ways to tackle the issues.

  1. Pages:
  2. Page 1
  3. 2
  4. All
Vern

Thank you for your insightful and timely article.

As a mental health professional of long standing, I fully support your views.

Even so, I take umbrage regarding you generalising that all service providers thought about the de-institutionalisation issue for only about five mintes.

Back in the early 80s, when the NSW Richmond Report was rife, I and my psychiatric nursing colleagues were adamant about fighting the politicians. We did not object to the inherent philosophy and principles contained in the notion of de-institutionalisation. We were against the notion that community funding had not, and would not be set up - despite the nonsense political promises. We wrote letters to politicians, we made phone calls to politicians, we marched on the Sydney Town Hall. We went on radio and TV. All to no avail. We predicted what would happen, and it did happen. It is not fair that you are now blaming us as part of the cause of the problem -and neither should the Consumer Movement. Ours hearts were there for consumers - and we fought really hard. We lost.

In 1984 I saw people whom I had nursed (some in Rozelle Hospital for 30 years) furraging in garbage bins for food after they had been discharged by the system. It was pathetic. We tried to start rehab and living skills programs and re-entry programs. The policicians did not give us enough time. Your comments make me feel like a failure.

Your WA colleague is not a first. Have you heard of the Sunshine Coast "Discovery" Program - which has been running for at least 10 years?

Cheers
Kay

PS: I can help the People Power Movement re Mental Health Issues. Just let me know.
Posted by kalweb, Monday, 10 October 2005 8:02:18 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Timely Contribution.
Verns comments on professional demarcation are fairly accurate - it is not a problem restricted to mental health though; when it comes to health services most groups invest a great amount of energy in marking out their territory.

Another issue rife in mental heath circles and symptomatic of the silo mentality of funding and service provision is the "target group" concept - professional groups devote and extraordinary amount of time determinng who they will not see - essentially defining out certain types of people - In fact it has developed a new kind of mental health professional - the "dual diagnosis worker". If you drink AND take drugs no one wants to look after you so they invented a new box to put you in.

Add that to lengthy "team meetings" and I have seen treatment centres effectively shut down for up to twenty percent of their funded time. A new paradigm is long overdue.

The Richmond Report may have deinstitutionalised the patient population - but over looked the chronic institutionalised approach to care in the mind set of many of the professionals. It may no longer be the lock 'em up beat em up and steal their tobacco kind of intitutionalisation of the sixties and seventies - but it is just the same dressed up with the palm pilot, the busy schedule and the private use of the vehicle kind of crap - the punter still gets abused and over looked but just in a different way.

And dont get me started on the mental health professionals asking the suicidal client under the mantra of having the right for care in the least restrictive environment - to tell the nursing staff if you feel like killing yourself! Doesnt work all the time so the odd bod does in fact die with their rights on.
Posted by sneekeepete, Tuesday, 11 October 2005 10:32:40 AM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Wishful thinking, if only all our mentally ill people were as interesting, exotic,whatever as Vivienne or the other lady, there would be lawyers, civil libertarians and various bleeding hearts fighting for the chance of delivering wonderful things to them. Particularly loads of lovely money.
Alas! They are only Australians. Therefore not worth any effort.
Institutions were not perfect but at least the patients had somewhere to live and someone to take care of them.
Many of the old institutions were built on what became highly desirable land so it was out with the patients and up went expensive houses. McMansions of the day.
How nice it would be if wishes were deeds.
Posted by mickijo, Tuesday, 11 October 2005 2:56:51 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Mental health does need changes - it needs to encompass Neurotoxicology and Environmental Medicine - There are many tens of thousands of toxic/neurotoxic chemicals (& carcinogenic chemicals) that we are exposed to daily - and this is a global health problem from chemical pollution - pesticides, insecticides, herbicides etc., are used virtually everywhere and are a serious human health and environmental health problem in particular. Chemical free alternatives must be encouraged and heavily promoted for pest control and weed control and organic food supply promoted and heavily encouraged - Please visit MCS-Global website to see some data on chemical exposures - see special websites on www.mcs-global.org with regard to pesticides, insecticides, herbicides, etc.. and also see technical papers section, plus all the other data on all the links of www.mcs-global.org - please also see under books and publications section the article Pesticides and the World Crime Epidemic - the effect on the human brain and body of these neurotoxic poisons needs to be incorporated in our whole mental health system which needs to embrace neurotoxicology and Environmental Medicine. Please see more of this data on MCS-Global website - www.mcs-global.org Thank you, Diana Buckland, Kallangur, Queensland Australia diana@mcs-global.org
Posted by Diana Buckland, Wednesday, 12 October 2005 2:23:48 PM
Find out more about this user Visit this user's webpage Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
We must get over government, if self-determination and self help, peer-based social-micro-enterprise product development and community support is to have any meaning, in the future.

Mental health needs a new paradigm, one that works beyond the restrictive automated disciplinary "silo's" that suborn those already isolated into a idiopathy caused by conformist tendencies associated with the way the "duty of care" society presently copes with corresponding causes of social drift.

I find it difficult to deal with figures where we find more than 80% of the mentally pronouced "ill" are also assessed as being unemployed.

One wonders if their lack of employment is the cause contribiting to their mental diagnosis or if it is as often promoted the other way around.

More importantly, one wonders how long it will take Mental Health to deal with the burden that underwrites the consequence at the heart of omitting that there is good reason to question, the second half of the first question.

This is because we need a matrix that supports a "will ti act" on this one.
Posted by miacat, Sunday, 16 October 2005 11:51:53 AM
Find out more about this user Visit this user's webpage Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
Hi My name is Thomas Proud i am a Mental health Peer Support worker
in a newly created position within a trial programe . I experience first hand the benifits of peer suport to mt participants and myself. My question is how do we prove this to the funding bodies so the work can continue.
Posted by trickdog, Tuesday, 3 July 2007 7:00:06 PM
Find out more about this user Recommend this comment for deletion Return to top of page Return to Forum Main Page Copy comment URL to clipboard
  1. Pages:
  2. Page 1
  3. 2
  4. All

About Us :: Search :: Discuss :: Feedback :: Legals :: Privacy