April 18, 2008

Mental Health

Science’s ability to address adolescent mental health problems is being greatly exaggerated
Medicine Weekly (Tue, 15 Apr 2008)                                                                                            Some mental health scientists and researchers have an “exaggerated belief” in the potential of science to deal with the deterioration of adolescent mental health, delegates attending the Spring Meeting of the Irish College of Psychiatrists (ICPsych) were told. Dr Martin O’Sullivan, Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist at the Mater Hospital, said researchers needed to look at wider issues such as resilience, identity, belonging, family and community.

Mental health patients visit GPs more often
Irish Medical Times (Tue, 15 Apr 2008)
People with mental health problems visit GPs more often than people with physical problems, according to a study by the Health Research Board. The HRB National Psycho-logical Wellbeing and Distress Survey found that 10 per cent of all respondents sought a GP’s advice for mental health problems. Dr Donna Tedstone Doherty, Senior Researcher in the HRB’s Mental Health Research Unit, said GPs need more training and education to deal with people who are mentally ill, and more community support.

Mental Health Service

Nurses vote for industrial action within two weeks
Irish Independent (Tue, 15 Apr 2008)
Nurses are set to trigger industrial action in two weeks, bringing further chaos to health services already struggling to cope with under- staffing.  Patients in psychiatric hospitals and other mental health, services are in danger of being caught in the middle of the industrial dispute.  Padraig Heverin, president of SIPTU National Nursing Council, yesterday told the union's annual nursing convention that nurses had voted overwhelmingly in favour of industrial action from April 29.

D-Day for service as key posts advertised
Sunday Independent Business (Sun, 13 Apr 2008)
After four years of negotiations, the new consultant contract is being finalised. This is set to bring major change to the health services in Ireland, with a key beneficiary being youth mental health services.  Linda Daly reports.

Child psychology shortfall
Irish Medical News (Fri, 11 Apr 2008)
A survey has found a four-to-five fold discrepancy between the five best and the five worst resourced child and adolescent mental health teams in the country, a meeting of Irish psychiatrists has heard. Dr Martin O’Sullivan, Con­sultant Child and Adult Psychi­atrist and Clinical Director of the Department of Child and Ado­lescent Mental Health at the Mater Hospital, was addressing the Irish College of Psychiatrists spring meeting in Malahide on the theme of Adolescent Mental Health Services – Where We Are And Where We Want To Go?

Suicide Prevention

 Concern over suicide websites
Irish Health (Fri 11/04/2008)
People searching the internet for information about suicide methods are more likely to come across sites that encourage suicide rather than sites that offer help and support, the results of a new study indicate.  According to UK researchers, the reporting of suicide in the media and its portrayal on television is known to influence suicidal behaviour, particularly in relation to the choice of method used.  However little is known about the influence of the internet.


Antidepressant study flawed – AWARE
Irish Medical News (Fri, 11 Apr 2008)
Recent research which disputed the effectiveness of antidepressants was flawed on many levels, according to one of the board members of the depression support organisation, AWARE.
Dr Harold Barry took part in a debate held in the Science Gallery at Trinity College Dublin (TCD) earlier this month. The recently published study, led by Prof Irving Kirsch of the University of Hull, suggested that leading brands of antidepressants worked little better than placebos in all but the most depressed patients.