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Archive for May, 2012

The Lesbian and Gay Foundation (LGF) have launched a new survey to build an accurate picture of current healthcare provision by GPs for LGB people which will then form part of a strategy to make sure that GPs are better equipped to acknowledge the needs of their LGB patients.

 The responses will be used to sustain and improve GP services for LGB people across the country. 
It is vitally important that LGB people stand up for their needs and experiences, and have them acknowledged by all healthcare professionals, including GPs. 


The survey, which closes 15th June, is available online at http://www.lgf.org.uk/gpexperiences

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From 11 June, there will be a new 24 hour assessment service and a dedicated home treatment team to help people remain in the community.

We know that any change can make people feel anxious, but people who already use services should not really notice these new teams – we should see better services, with increased staffing for these teams and work done ‘behind the scenes’ to improve their systems. Phone numbers won’t change. Family, including carers and young carers, may be worried by the emphasis on home treatment and the lack of respite services locally. We hope that the additional support from the home treatment team, will help the whole family.

We have service user and carer representatives on the new local steering group for this project. It meets every 6 weeks. There will also be meetings at the United Reformed Church with Sam Oliver, Assistant Director – Change Programmes, 5 Boroughs. These are an opportunity to feed any concerns and compliments to the steering group. (See dates on the diary).

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Member’s Poetry

TO BE LOVED

TO BE LOVED AND NOT AFRAID

TO BE LOVED AND TO BE SAVED

FROM ALL THE SINS OF MANKIND

AND FROM THE SUN THAT MAKES YOU BLIND

TO BE MISSED WHEN NO LONGER HERE

BY YOUR FRIENDS WHO DRINK THEIR BEER

AND ALL YOUR KIN WHO STAND IN LINE

WILL ALL GO IN THEIR OWN TIME

BUT LOVE IS SUCH A POWERFUL FORCE

THE TEST OF TIME THROUGH DIVORCE

LEAVE A MARK OF A HUMAN BEING

NO LONGER HERE BUT ALWAYS SEEING

BY BRIAN LUNT

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People are still very worried about changes to benefits including being called in for Work Capability Assessments. It is always best to take someone with you to the assessment. People also described how long the appeal process takes and the difficulties that can cause.

People are still worried about the future of the building at Vista Road, with questions about what the Trust will do with the building. Despite 5 Boroughs saying that Vista Road will stay open, people are worried that might change in future.

A member of the LINks attended the group. He agreed to take some of the concerns about Vista Road to the next LINk meeting.

Lesley now has a form that she can take to people she supports so that they can give her permission to bring their comments and issues to the Forum on their behalf. Thank you to people who have completed these – they have been passed anonymously to the LINk.

We talked about Peer Support Workers and the ImROC (recovery) project. We agreed that it really does help to talk to someone who has been through a similar experience.

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Inquiry into the schizophrenia label

The website for the inquiry is now live – http://schizophreniainquiry.org/

The Inquiry Panel would like to hear about your experience and thoughts about ‘schizophrenia’ or similar labels such as ‘psychosis’. They are interested in hearing from a wide range of people. There is a survey form on their website and a testimony form – please do get involved.

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ImROC – Implementing recovery for organisational change

This exciting national project is making huge differences to mental health services in some parts of the country. Trusts are using education rather than therapy, and are setting up Recovery Education Colleges. They are also employing people with direct experience as peer workers.

Karen has been involved in the project nationally as well as locally, and will give a presentation at the May Forum meeting – see flyer for details – all welcome. Come to the meeting to hear about this project and discuss whether we would like to see such changes locally.

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We’ve agreed to combine the two mailouts for the Forum and Carers group to form one newsletter. This will help us to make sure everyone gets the information. It also makes best use of our resources so that we don’t duplicate mailouts and reduce postal costs where possible.

For this month, we have put all the material for the two groups into this mailout. We would like to include contributions from you – so if you have any writing or artwork you would like us to publish, please either email it to Karen, or drop it in at the Oasis group on a Monday morning.

If you want to help out, by writing pieces or stuffing envelopes – please get in touch – the more people involved the easier it is for us all.

 You can help us to save money:

  • If you would prefer to receive information by email please, do let us know your up to date email address. (Email me at k.machin@sthelensmhforum.org )

  • If more than one person in your house now receives this, and you would be happy to share a copy – please let me know.

  • If you move address, don’t forget to tell us.

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