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I sincerely appreciate all your support for my boutique speakers bureau, Physician Speaking by KevinMD. These speakers are both practicing physicians and award-winning speakers that shine on stage. This Fall, we will highlight the following events: 2018 Ohio Dermatological Association Annual Meeting, Columbus OH Richmond Academy of Medicine, Annual Meeting, Richmond VA Maricopa County Medical […]

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Repercussions. Every action that is taken, especially when it comes to healthcare, has ripple effects, which often end up being more far more significant than we anticipate, turning that ripple into a tidal wave. Every time somebody besides actual health care providers steps into the mix and tell those of us taking care of patients […]

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In March 2018, The Collaborative for Healing and Renewal in Medicine (CHARM) published an article titled “Charter on Physician Well-being” in JAMA. The piece describes guiding principles and lists recommendations for promoting well-being among physicians. The charter successfully pulls together, in a 2-page document, a comprehensive approach to preventing burnout and fostering well-being among physicians. One […]

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Scientists hope computer programme which requires no human therapist could be used to treat other mental health problems

  • Daniel and Jason Freeman: Don’t dismiss tech solutions to mental health problems

A fear of heights could be overcome with the help of a virtual therapist, new research suggests, with experts saying the findings boost hopes virtual reality could play a key role in tackling other mental health problems.

According to a 2014 YouGov survey, an aversion to heights is more common in the UK than a fear of spiders, snakes, or being on a plane, with 23% of British adults “very afraid” of heights and 35% a little afraid.

Related: Don't dismiss tech solutions to mental health problems

Related: How virtual reality is changing the game in healthcare

Related: Tests raise hopes for radical new therapy for phobias and PTSD

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Teaching unions say the government’s accountability measures reduce children to tears

The schools minister, Nick Gibb, has rejected accusations that the government’s school accountability measures place undue stress on children, as the results for this year’s national tests showed improved performances in English and maths.

Teaching unions in England have argued that the pressure resulting from standard assessment tasks (Sats) has seen children reduced to tears or suffering panic attacks among 10- and 11-year-olds in their final year of primary school.

Related: Sats for seven-year-olds in England to be scrapped

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Parents of man who died had criticised Tory MP who previously blocked measure

A private member’s bill to ensure that police who are called to restrain patients at mental hospitals wear body cameras has passed through the Commons.

There had been fears that the bill – supported by the parents of a 21-year-old man who died after he was subject to a period of excessive and prolonged restraint – could be blocked by a Conservative filibuster, but it completed its third reading in about an hour on Friday morning with the parents, Aji and Conrad Lewis, watching in the public gallery.

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Archbishop of Canterbury and daughters speak out on disability and mental health

The archbishop of Canterbury has said he has not prayed for his daughter Ellie Welby in relation to her disability because it is part of her and “she is precious”.

However, he prays on a daily basis for another daughter, Katherine Welby-Roberts, who has depression and anxiety.

Related: Faith can't cure depression. But it can offer hope, as Katherine Welby found | Andrew Brown

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With a fifth of English homes officially not decent to live in, health and housing professionals are joining forces to improve residents’ wellbeing

When Billie Dee moved to London after university, a run of unpaid internships meant she could only afford a windowless room in a flat share in Stratford or stay with her boyfriend in Guildford. The room in Stratford made her “horrendously depressed”, she says. “There was no ventilation or natural light. I felt incredibly claustrophobic and my mental health rapidly deteriorated.”

Her boyfriend’s basement room was even worse: “His room was rotting and damp. I actually got whooping cough, which lasted nearly three months. I was so depressed and anxious, and my self-worth was seriously low because my surroundings were so bad.” The situation dragged on for a year until Dee got a new job and could afford somewhere better to live.

Related: Yes, let’s celebrate the NHS at 70. But it isn’t the only service keeping us healthy

Related: 'The NHS would collapse without them': the growing role of volunteers

Related: Sign up for the Society Weekly email newsletter

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Former LSE student counsellor Robert Harris on the psychological horrors suffered by millennials, and Dr Max Davie on worrying cuts to student counselling services

Your article about “perfectionism” and young people in higher education (G2, 17 July) notes, but nimbly skips over, the clear link between neoliberal dog-eat-dog individualism and the psychological horrors suffered by unfortunate millennials who have never known anything but rabid destructive competition. The bullying cultures rife in academia (Report, 17 July) create terrors of rejection and exclusion. Young people are strongly inclined to feel that failure is due to inherent personal weakness, rather than something to be learned from to enhance personal development. A culture that emphasises pleasing those above and keeping up false images of competence and success with peers, rather than the enjoyment and value of pursuing knowledge for its own sake, will inevitably create both internal psychological attackers of guilt and self-blame and external bullies of insecure and anxious managers.
Robert Harris
Former student counsellor and psychotherapist, LSE

• Support for children and young people’s mental health should not...

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To fight a rising tide of depression and suicide, psychiatrists need to do more than just fill patients up with pills

The New York Times recently published an important investigative report shining a long-overdue light on the painful, sometimes disabling experience of withdrawing from antidepressants – drugs that millions of Americans have been taking, sometimes for decades

The recent deaths of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain threw into stark relief the human toll that depression can take. But the problem is complex, with multiple factors. We are seeing a striking increase in the number of Americans diagnosed with depression, and an accompanying increase in suicides. This is coupled with the promiscuous and sharply increasing prescription of antidepressants to 34.4 million Americans in 2013-2014, up from 13.4 million just 15 years earlier. And this pervasive prescribing continues despite the lack of proof of the drugs’ long-term effectiveness; their mixed results even with short-term treatment; the frequent side-effects – weight gain, gastrointestinal problems and sexual dysfunction – that are themselves depressing. Meanwhile, we are paying the prohibitive financial costs of...

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This episode of our regular podcast focuses on the impact of the modern news cycle on our health and wellbeing, and whether a greater focus on positive, hopeful, solution-based stories could help to mitigate this

What are the effects of negative news on our mental health and sense of empowerment? How does it effect our trust in the media? Why historically has negative news become so prevalent at the expense of positive, solutions-focused, constructive news and could a more balanced picture of the world lead to greater empowerment and individual actions to make things better?

Joining the Guardian’s Executive editor for membership, Lee Glendinning, to discuss this and more is Dr Denise Baden, an Associate Professor within the University of Southampton Business School, whose research has looked into how people are affected by positive and negative news stories, Seán Dagan Wood, the editor-in-chief of Positive News – a current affairs magazine, publishing independent journalism about progress and possibility – and Sean is the co-founder of the Constructive Journalism Project, Giselle Green, Editor of Constructive Voices, an NCVO (National Council for Voluntary Organisations) project...

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For many restaurant workers, kitchen culture makes it impossible to recognize the pain, but new services open the dialogue for seeking help

When he was at his most desperate, Jakob Anderson was working himself so hard he couldn’t even think. Every morning and night, the young aspiring chef undertook the almost 90-minute commute from his home in the suburbs of Whitby, Ontario, to the fashionable Italy restaurant in downtown Toronto, where he worked for 12 hours a day.

In the evening, clocking out and heading home at last, he would board his commuter train, chug an extra large cup of boiling-hot coffee, and immediately pass out.

Related: Is being a chef bad for your mental health?

You get to hide from the world, and hide from yourself, by burying yourself in your work for 12 hours a day

Related: Sign up for the Guardian's US daily email

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Critics say shifting counselling resources into ‘wellbeing’ is perverse and dangerous when depression and suicide among students are at worrying levels

Amid mounting concern over student suicides, some universities have found a surprising solution to their long mental health waiting lists – they are reducing or outsourcing their counselling services in a move apparently designed to shift the burden on to the NHS.

Unable to keep up with rising demand, they are rebranding their mental health student support as “wellbeing” services. Some universities plan to maintain a reduced number of counsellors, but others are sending students to local NHS services. Professional counsellors are being told to reapply for jobs as wellbeing practitioners, or face redundancy.

Related: Student mental health must be top priority – universities minister

Related: Let universities alert parents about students' struggles, says father

Related: Bristol University faces growing anger after student suicides

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A new book of photographs challenges the stigma around mental health and captures the light and shade in the lives of Quail’s brother Justin and his girlfriend, Jackie

My brother, Justin, is not a straightforward person,” says photographer Louis Quail, “His otherness is very apparent. I have seen people recoil from him on the bus.” Justin was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia when he was 20. Now 57, his adult life has been defined to a great degree by his condition and by people’s reactions to it, whether the public, the authorities or his doctors. “I wanted to challenge the stigma of mental illness,” says Louis, “and one way to do that is to show the light and shade in his life, the small details as well as the dramas.”

Big Brother is a moving, sometimes disturbing and often very funny ode to his schizophrenic sibling, whose fertile creative imagination and extraordinary resilience are evident throughout. It begins with a series of Justin’s watercolours and pencil sketches of birds as well as a handwritten inventory of the 56 species that he observed as a 14-year-old birdwatcher over two days in May 1973. The sense of adolescent curiosity bordering on obsession is...

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There were a record 389,727 ‘active referrals’ in England in April, NHS figures show

Almost 400,000 children and young people a year in England are being treated for mental health problems, the highest number ever, NHS figures show.

There were a total of 389,727 “active referrals” for people aged 18 or younger in April, a third higher than the same month two years ago, according to the latest statistics published by NHS Digital.

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There is a desperate shortage of skilled clinicians to treat mental health disorders. Our study shows how virtual reality could fill the gap

The words “mental health” and “crisis” now appear to be yoked together. About a quarter of us will suffer from a clinical psychological disorder over the next year, but most people will receive no help at all. The question is no longer about whether we have a problem, but what we are going to do about it.

We don’t lack high-quality, evidence-based psychological treatments for many mental health problems. These treatments have been verified by dozens of clinical trials. What we are short of is the skilled clinicians to deliver them.

Related: Automated virtual reality therapy helps people overcome phobia of heights

Related: Virtual reality isn't just for gaming - it could transform mental health treatment

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As medical professionals we often see people at their worst: battered and broken, bothered and in pain, no make-up, bad hair day, naked and too ill to even care about modesty. At those critical moments, in our patients’ hour of desperation, they hand over their lives to us … and the lives of their family. […]

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The doctor-patient interaction is the absolute core of clinical medicine. Maybe I’ll go much further: it’s the core of health care in general. I always try to remember, whenever I’m ever feeling frustrated with the system, the crazy bureaucracy — and of course, the debacle of our clunky electronic medical records and their data entry […]

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Imagine, if you will, that you’re an anesthesiologist. You’ve been part of a successful practice for over 10 years. You can walk down your neighborhood street and run into mothers whose epidurals you’ve helped place. You’ve established a home, a community, and your children are in a great school system. One uneventful day, say Wednesday, […]

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When news broke that Dr. Atul Gawande had been named CEO of the Amazon-Berkshire-JPMorgan Chase health care partnership, industry insiders were quick to raise doubts about his credentials. Some pointed to his limited administrative experience, questioning how someone who has never managed a hospital or health system could oversee the care of some 1 million patient-employees. They […]

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There are 168 hours in a week and 8,736 hours in a year. There are 10,080 minutes in a week, and 524,160 minutes in a year. Residents and fellows working in an academic environment often work close to, if not in large part, more than 80 hours a week, or 4,160 hours a year. They […]

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Many people in our country, or I should say in this world, have been shocked and devastated by recent celebrity suicides. Many wonder how can someone whose life looks so perfect be depressed? Well, people are starting to recognize that anyone, no matter how successful, how rich or how attractive can experience severe depression. Many […]

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For people with Alzheimer’s and other degenerative diseases, just navigating around the house can be difficult and disorientating. But some pioneering approaches are offering new solutions

One sunflower painting looks like another here, each numberless door is identical and I am hopelessly disoriented; desperate to find an exit, a shaft of light, even. I turn right, up another featureless corridor, and then left and then right again – but is this really the way I came?

It’s a relief when a researcher removes my virtual reality headset, but it takes a few moments for my heart rate to return to baseline. I am at Bournemouth University’s department of psychology, where Jan Wiener and his team are researching the difficulties people with dementia have with wayfinding (orienting oneself in physical space). I have just briefly experienced the spatial disorientation that characterises Alzheimer’s, but for Wendy Mitchell, who lives near Hull in Yorkshire, it’s a perpetual experience. Diagnosed with the condition almost four years ago, when she was 58, she now travels around the country raising awareness of dementia. Her journeys demand precision planning. “I have a pink file that’s stuffed...

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In the US, where I teach, mental health problems are rife. In Nigeria, poverty is common but there’s no hopelessness. Why?

Nigeria, like most African nations, has been taught and dictated to since its independence, largely seen by the rest of the world as a receptacle for ideas rather than a generator of them. But is there something the world could learn from us? During the past few weeks in Nigeria, I’ve interviewed some 40 strangers whose lives, like those of most people in the country, were mired in want and suffering. Everywhere, people ambled about sweating, their skins wearing gradations of deprivation. Everywhere you turned there was a conspicuous lack of opportunities. Beggars walked about naked or in rags, bearing their ailments as banners to request help. Even those who were fully clothed – many looking flamboyant – seemed to be in urgent need of help, aching to achieve a certain dream.

He argued: 'If you lived in a world with no suffering, it will be an abnormality. That would make anyone miserable.'

Related: Focusing on schoolgirl abductions distorts the view of life in Nigeria | Chitra Nagarajan

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Observer columnist Katharine Whitehorn’s son on the difficulties of dealing with decline

So it’s out. My mother, Katharine Whitehorn, has Alzheimer’s disease. She who has lived entirely by her wits has now lost them. Sounds cruel? Try watching a dignified and private person lose everything they value, suffer every humiliation you can imagine, if you want to know what cruelty means.

I can’t remember exactly when Kath told us what was up. We were walking on Hampstead Heath. She had been undergoing various investigations to explain, aside from her deteriorating memory, some troubling episodes of confusion, even hallucination. Now the result was in. I wasn’t hugely surprised, but still the word carried the ring of finality.

Related: My new helper helps my family stop worrying

Related: The writer Katharine Whitehorn would rather die than live like this | Polly Toynbee

Related: A right-to-die law is the only way to prevent another Gosport | Polly Toynbee

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The author on being known for his depression memoir, the dangers of social media, and Winnie-the-Pooh

Matt Haig is a writer of novels and nonfiction books for children and adults, including The Humans and How To Stop Time. He is also the author of Reasons to Stay Alive, a bestselling memoir about his descent into depression, aged 24, and his subsequent efforts to climb out of it. His new book, Notes on a Nervous Planet (Canongate, £12.99), explores how to stay sane in our fast-moving, anxiety-inducing world.

Why did you decide to return to the subject of depression in Notes on a Nervous Planet?
Not wanting to be nauseatingly name-dropping, Stephen Fry warned me after Reasons to Stay Alive not to become Mr Depression, and I thought he must know what he was talking about. So I wrote a book about Father Christmas [A Boy Called Christmas] and a novel, How to Stop Time, and tried to concentrate on other stuff. But the subject kept coming up at readers’ events. What struck me really strongly was, while we acknowledge things like alcohol or drugs can be bad for our mental health, we don’t really understand how more day-to-day stuff affects us. So I thought it might be useful to write a...

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It’s never been easier to open up – but hashtag healthcare doesn’t help people like me

I am bleeding from the wrists in a toilet cubicle of the building I have therapy in, with my junior doctor psychiatrist peering over the top of the door, her lanyards clanking against the lock. Her shift finished half an hour earlier.

An hour later she calls the police, because I have refused to go to A&E or to let her look at me. Four policemen arrive. They are all ridiculously handsome. One of them is called Austin. Austin doesn’t have a Taser like all the others and when I question this, Austin says he hasn’t done his Taser training and all the others laugh. I feel bad for Austin.

Throwing a ball of wool to one another in a circle might be helpful for some people, but it absolutely wasn’t for me

Amy Winehouse, voice of a goddamn goddess. We’ll allow. Kathy, 54, works at Morrisons. Not so much

Enough awareness has been raised. We – the public, health professionals, politicians – need to make our actions count

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Readers respond to news about soaring Ritalin use, the underfunding of child mental health services and the toll GCSEs are taking

As a group of educators, psychologists, mental health professionals, campaigners and politicians, we share Amanda Spielman’s timely recognition (Report, 27 June) that the massive increase in young children receiving prescriptions for powerful stimulant drugs is both “a very big warning signal” and an indication that we need as a society to understand and address the underlying social, behavioural and educational issues that give rise to this pressure.

However, it is also timely and hopefully reassuring that this past week also saw the establishment of a new group of like-minded colleagues called Cope (Challenging over-prescription of psychiatric drugs in education) across education, healthcare and politics to begin to consider these important issues.

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In June 2018, the World Health Organization released its latest version of the ICD-11. Among the new mental health disorders? Gaming disorder

Subscribe and review: Acast, Apple, Spotify, SoundCloud, AudioBoom, Mixcloud. Join the discussion on Facebook, Twitter or email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The World Health Organization has been working on an update for its diagnostic manual, the International Classification of Diseases (ICD). In June 2018 it released its latest version of the ICD-11 for implementation.

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Simon Stevens has said significant expansion required to treat increasing problems

Children’s mental health services will need to expand significantly to cope with the growing problems faced by young people, the head of the NHS in England has said.

Simon Stevens said higher rates of mental illness combined with a greater willingness of people coming forward with problems meant there would have to be a “major ramp up” in services.

Related: What do you think about legalising cannabis in the UK?

Related: 'It consumed my life': inside a gaming addiction treatment centre

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Supreme court president says judges may have contributed to ‘culture of blame’

The Mental Health Act needs to be updated because too many people are being detained in hospital and doctors are becoming increasingly risk-averse, the president of the supreme court has said.

In a speech to the Royal College of Psychiatrists, Lady Hale acknowledged that judges themselves may have contributed to a “culture of blame, shame and fear”.

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The achievements of our health service are justly lauded, but a crucial part of it is unacceptably underfunded and neglected

The added disability from which our health system suffers is the isolation of mental health from the rest of the health services.” So said Nye Bevan, the founder of the NHS, in 1946, two years before the creation of what is now the world’s largest publicly funded health service. It’s still true. Mental health services, the poor relation of the NHS, are often delivered on remote sites in dilapidated buildings. My clinic room is a windowless cupboard.

Related: A safe space: NHS unit on frontline of child mental health crisis

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The loud bangs fireworks produce, similar to gunshots, can trigger symptoms of post-traumatic stress

For many mass shooting survivors, Fourth of July fireworks are a challenge, not a sign of celebration. It is an issue that military veterans and survivors of everyday gun violence have dealt with for years: the loud bangs of America’s Independence Day fireworks can trigger symptoms of post-traumatic stress.

This year it will be a new experience for the teens who survived school shootings in Parkland, Florida, and Santa Fe, Texas, in the spring.

Related: ‘It goes into your psyche’: photographing gunshot survivors in the US

Please be courteous and respectful every 4th of July ❤️❤️ pic.twitter.com/agv9q6fq2k

Every year, the noise, the bang, the flashes – it does bring flashbacks of being there

Related: Bonfire night sparks unwanted memories of combat for war veterans

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Although the Coborn in east London works at the ‘extreme end’ of mental health, its services are increasingly in demand

  • NHS at 70: all our anniversary coverage in one place

“Our child is articulate, funny, clever, musical. But she’s unrecognisable to us here today,” says Sally, with pain in her voice as she talks about her 15-year-old daughter Ruth. “We’re worried that all that potential – for Ruth to live a happy life – could go unused,” adds her husband, Bill.

The couple are talking after a tense, fraught and frustratingly unproductive session of family therapy with their daughter and therapist Frank Aust at Ruth’s temporary home, the Coborn Centre for Adolescent Mental Health in Newham, east London. During the hour-long meeting Ruth, withdrawn and sometimes angry, avoided her parents’ gaze, did not embrace or even touch them and at one point had to be persuaded not to storm out.

These are young people who are suffering with a mental health disorder that’s bringing them immense distress

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Musician says he has sought treatment for ‘suicidal thoughts’, and urges public figures to help remove stigma about mental illness

James Blake has discussed how the pressures of his early career led to him developing “suicidal thoughts”. “I would say that chemical imbalance due to diet and the deterioration of my health was a huge, huge factor in my depression and eventual suicidal thoughts,” said the 29-year-old British songwriter. “I developed [dietary] intolerances that would lead to existential depression on a daily basis. I would eat a certain thing and then all day I would feel like there was just no point.”

Speaking on a panel about the “suicide crisis in the arts population” at the annual symposium of the Performing Arts Medicine Association (PAMA) in California on 1 July, Blake discussed how the superficial interactions of touring life left him feeling alienated, Billboard reports. “I was taken away from normal life essentially at an age where I was half-formed,” he said. “Your connection to other people becomes surface-level. So if you were only in town for one day and someone asked you how you are, you go into the good stuff, which generally doesn’t involve how anxious...

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Theresa May promises ‘real and lasting change’ following huge nationwide survey

The government will appoint a national LGBT health adviser and take measures to end so-called conversion therapy as part of a plan to deliver what Theresa May has promised will be “real and lasting change”.

The proposals form part of an action plan published by the Equalities Office on Tuesday. It follows a UK-wide survey of LGBT people that had more than 108,000 responses, billed as the largest study of its kind.

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Kevin Donovan and David Murray on privatisation, an anonymous correspondent on mental health services, Serena Wylde on the limits of the NHS’s remit, and Sotirios Hatjoullis on Aneurin Bevan’s contribution

What are we celebrating (The NHS at 70, Journal, 2 July)? There is no national health service in England. It has been replaced by 44 local “footprints” which, over the course of their recent existence, have changed the acronyms and euphemisms in their title on an irregular and confusing basis. After “sustainability and transformation” (STP) there was “accountable care”, then “integrated care”, and “place-based care”. The complete obfuscation was accompanied by changes from “partnership” to “plan” to “organisation” to “system”.

The Cheshire and Merseyside “partnership board” meets in Liverpool this Wednesday. Speakers include the “independent chair” of the region’s footprint. He is paid £150,000 for two days a week. On the other three days he earns his crust from a consultancy advising local bodies on how to implement “sustainability”. Another speaker will be NHS England’s “national director in charge of catalysing integrated care”, who announced to the Health Service Journal...

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So many mothers have mental health problems after having a baby, and even a long time after. But it isn’t taken seriously

Sleep deprivation. Paranoia. Panic attacks. Extreme mood swings. Social isolation. Depression. Anxiety. Neural damage. Cause for concern, surely?

But what if it’s as a result of becoming a new mother? In that context, is your opinion different? You know about motherhood beforehand, and it’s short term. Women can prepare for it, and it’s not that big a deal. Those who haven’t had children sometimes can’t see what the fuss is about. Some who have, and did not experience many problems, think those complaining about it should just pull their socks up. Everybody has a mother – how hard can it be?

Related: Postpartum psychosis: ‘I’m a thing possessed, an animal. I am nearly sectioned twice’

Related: I deleted my baby apps when I realised how much they fetishise motherhood | Cerys Howell

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Absent a last-minute, lifesaving intervention, after 20 years of reviewing and summarizing clinical practice guidelines in a continuously updated database, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s National Guideline Clearinghouse (NGC) will go offline on July 16th. Prior to its untimely death due to budget cuts, the NGC not only served as a one-of-a-kind online resource for clinicians, […]

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Primary care visits are never quick; we don’t give much advice over the phone or online; and we prioritize the government’s and insurance companies’ public health agenda over our own patients’ concerns. Imagine health care as a retail customer experience for a few minutes: Imagine you’re going to Walmart to buy a bag of dog […]

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When we go to the deli, we expect to take a number and wait in line. Accomplishing any task at the department of motor vehicles can be an ordeal of waiting and then being herded out the door. This is part of life in American society. However, it should not be part of your health […]

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Dieting teenagers are more likely to partake in other unhealthy activities, according to a new study. And there are common factors behind these behaviours

A study in Canada has found that teenage girls who diet are also more likely to take part in unhealthy behaviours, such as smoking and binge drinking. The research, involving more than 3,300 high-school students in Ontario, found that dieters were more likely to smoke, drink and skip breakfast three years later. Smoking and skipping meals have long been considered – unhealthily and erroneously – a way to lose weight. “But the explanation is not so clear for something like binge drinking,” said Amanda Raffoul, who led the study for the University of Waterloo. “It was worrying, she added, “since 70% of girls reported dieting at some point over the three years.” Previous studies, also in Canada, found that teenage girls undertook unhealthy weight-control methods such as vomiting (affecting between 5% and 12% of adolescent girls), diet pill use (between 3% and 10%) and smoking (up to 18% of girls).

Related: Severe obesity rates double during primary school, figures show

Related: Binge-drink Britain: how one weekend bender can...

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In equal societies, citizens trust each other and contribute to their community. This goes into reverse in countries like ours

The gap between image and reality yawns ever wider. Our rich society is full of people presenting happy smiling faces both in person and online, but when the Mental Health Foundation commissioned a large survey last year, it found that 74% of adults were so stressed they felt overwhelmed or unable to cope. Almost a third had had suicidal thoughts and 16% had self-harmed at some time in their lives. The figures were higher for women than men, and substantially higher for young adults than for older age groups. And rather than getting better, the long-term trends in anxiety and mental illness are upwards.

For a society that believes happiness is a product of high incomes and consumption, these figures are baffling. However, studies of people who are most into our consumerist culture have found that they are the least happy, the most insecure and often suffer poor mental health.

Related: The psychological effects of inequality – Science Weekly podcast

Related: Rising inequality linked to drop in union membership

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Southbank festival will host a panel on mental health and the music industry following band frontman Scott Hutchison’s death in May

Frightened Rabbit’s set at Meltdown festival in London is to be replaced by a panel on mental health awareness and the music industry, following the death of singer Scott Hutchison, who took his own life in May.

The Scottish indie band were due to perform on 19 June at Southbank Centre’s annual arts festival, this year curated by the Cure’s Robert Smith. Hutchison was last seen on 9 May. Police found his body near Edinburgh the following day.

Related: Frightened Rabbit's Scott Hutchison: a songwriter who found humanity in our flaws

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Research finds 80% of rough sleepers who died in capital in 2017 had mental health needs compared with 29% in 2010


Deaths of rough sleepers with mental health problems have risen sharply over the last seven years, prompting concern that specialist services are not reaching those who need them.

Research released on Tuesday by the homeless charity St Mungo’s shows that four out of five (80%) rough sleepers who died in London in 2017 had mental health needs, an increase from three in 10 (29%) in 2010.

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As the World Health Organization classifies gaming disorder as a mental health condition, one UK treatment centre reveals how it is trying to tackle the problem

Ian* was in his 20s when he started gaming in the mid-1990s. A long-time interest in building PCs had developed into an initially healthy interest in first-person shooters like Counter Strike and Team Fortress, which he’d play at weekends and when he came home from work.

It was the online element of these games, he says, that really changed his relationship to gaming, and what started as a hobby quickly took over his life.

When I got home on a Friday night, I would sit at the computer and I wouldn’t leave until Sunday night

Game makers are deliberately tapping into an addictive process

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John Paul Finnigan and Kevin Williams both struggled with PTSD after serving in Iraq

Two former soldiers who killed themselves within weeks of each other should have received more support, the brother of one of the men has said.

John Paul Finnigan and Kevin Williams served together on the frontline in Iraq and formed an “undeniable bond”. When they left the army they both struggled with post-traumatic stress disorder.

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Teens in Netherlands regularly top life satisfaction tables, with schooling playing a big role

In a biology class at a secondary school near Rotterdam, Gerrit the skeleton is not the only one with a permanent grin.

The Groen van Prinstererlyceum, which first trialled happiness lessons a decade ago, teaches some of the least troubled teens in the world.

Related: Young people can be champions of change in mental health care

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Despite government promises to end practice, figures show almost no change since 2016

Hundreds of mental health patients are being sent hundreds of miles from home to get treatment, despite ministers branding the practice damaging and unacceptable.

Latest NHS figures show that in February 650 adults in England had to travel for inpatient treatment, even though Jeremy Hunt, the health and social care secretary, has pledged to reduce, and eventually ban, out-of-area placements by 2020.

Between 2010-11 and 2016-17, health spending increased by an average of 1.2% above inflation and increases are due to continue in real terms at a similar rate until the end of this parliament. This is far below the annual inflation-proof growth rate that the NHS enjoyed before 2010 of almost 4% stretching back to the 1950s. As budgets tighten, NHS organisations have been struggling to live within their means. In the financial year 2015-16, acute trusts recorded a deficit of £2.6bn. This was reduced to £800m last year, though only after a £1.8bn bung from the Department of Health, which shows the deficit remained the same year on year.

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Mental health is a level of psychological well-being, or an absence of a mental disorder; it is the "psychological state of someone who is functioning at a satisfactory level of emotional and behavioral adjustment".

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