Category Archives: mental health

Who cares? Genie explores the lives of young carers

According to research by the Children’s Society there are estimated to be 700,000 young carers aged between 5 and 17 years old in the UK.

That figure surprise many people, and the charity goes on to explain how caring at a young age can impact a young persons’ education, health, development and quality of life.

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The Recovery College Phenomena – Sandy Walker

I love being a researcher
Sandra Walker is a Senior Teaching Fellow in Mental Health at the University of Southampton

In 2015 I was fortunate enough to be awarded some funding from Solent NHS Trust to explore the networks of people with long term mental health issues. This project looked at how people manage their networks day-to-day and when they are in crisis, looking to see what the differences were between networks and how people negotiate the relationships within them. All the participants were recruited from community groups and many of the participants were students of a local Recovery College*.

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‘There’s no better person to help you than you’ – The missing links in care by Sandy Walker

Could this statement be the one that encapsulates the perception that mental health services are frequently unable to help people with mental health issues?

A research participant in a study I’m conducting into support networks of people with long term mental health problems outlined what she saw as some of the problems with her encounters with health professionals in the mental health system.

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The power of parity – why I love being a researcher – Sandra Walker

I’ve been a clinician in mental health for many (many) years I have heard tales of woe and distress. They have often been so devastating, and at the same time, inspirational as one hears about the efforts people make to overcome the most extreme situations. I have always felt a sense of privilege at being allowed into these stories and as a researcher this privilege feels somehow even more intense.

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Love thy neighbour – why friends may be the answer to staying well.

Professor of Health Systems Implementation in the Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Southampton and Research Director of the NIHR CLAHRC Wessex
Professor Anne Rogers is Professor of Health Systems Implementation in the Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Southampton and Research Director of the NIHR CLAHRC Wessex

Professor Anne Rogers explains how weaker social ties play a role in helping people manage a long term illness.

With ever more attention on the NHS and how many nurses and doctors are needed to give people the best care, one part of the health equation is going unnoticed – What attention is being paid to the role of the patient and their extended network of relationships? In early 70s West Coast America a piece of research by Anselm Strauss and colleagues examined a set of questions on ‘self-care’.

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It’s the taking part that counts – How using social networks might support mental health recovery. Sandra Walker writes about how her research took an unexpected turn.

Managing our mental health is something we all do and for many of us it is a fairly straightforward process, but a significant number of us are likely to find it rather more complex, sometimes  needing support from our GP or mental health services. As part of our research in CLAHRC Wessex we’re looking at how people use their social networks to improve and manage their mental health.

Continue reading It’s the taking part that counts – How using social networks might support mental health recovery. Sandra Walker writes about how her research took an unexpected turn.

The GENIE is out of the bottle – but who controls it? – Dr Anne Kennedy, Principal Research Fellow, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Southampton

Here at the CLAHRC Wessex we have been using and developing an interactive tool called GENIE . This is designed to engage and link people with long-term health conditions to social activities and support they value and find useful.

We have been working on the Isle of Wight with the My Life a Full Life team and other organisations to see how we can integrate GENIE as part of day-to-day support for people. Last week we had our first meeting, after months of using the system there to work towards making GENIE ‘Business as Usual’.

Continue reading The GENIE is out of the bottle – but who controls it? – Dr Anne Kennedy, Principal Research Fellow, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Southampton