August 12, 2011


Eating Disorders

'Waisting' away
Irish Examiner (Friday, 12 August 2011)
Idealised images of bodies in the media are contributing to eating disorders among young girls, says Arlene Harris. "I'ts no surprise that children are developing eating disorders.."

Mental Health
Come alive to the sound of music
Irish Independent (Monday, 08 August 2011)
A famous treatise on depression 'The Anatomy of Melancholy' by Robert Burton, a 17th century British physician, identified music as an agent of psychological healing. In Britain and the US music therapy has been in use since the 1940s and has a role in a variety of specialties including geriatric, palliative care, psychiatry and learning disability.
Sex attack victims in mental health risk

Evening Herald (Saturday, 06 August 2011)
Women who have been sexually assaulted, abused by a partner or stalked may face high risks of depression and other mental health conditions, warns an Australian study.

Mental Health Service

€22m spent on mental health agency staff, overtime

Irish Examiner (Tuesday, 09 August 2011)
More than €22 million was spent on agency staff and overtime within the mental health nursing services during 2010, documents obtained by the Irish Examiner have revealed. A draft proposal prepared by mental health bosses in order to reduce overtime and agency use says that in 2010, €15.2m was paid out on overtime, while €7m was paid for agency nurses.
Patients 'not able to access' psychologists
Irish Examiner (Tuesday, 09 August 2011)
The "overwhelming majority" of public mental health patients who need psychological interventions are not getting them, the Irish Association of Psychologists in Mental Health has said. The coalition of 100 HSE psychologists says this means a continued over-reliance on the prescribing of medi- cations, which in many cases is not the right treatment.

Care of self-harm cases variable'

Limerick Chronicle (Tue, 9 August 2011)
Inconsistencies in how people are treated after attending hospital having self-harmed are evident in statistics gathered from Limerick's two emergency departments in 2010. Last year, the city again had the highest rate of deliberate self-harm in the country among women and the second highest for men. Both ran at more than twice the national average, with overdoses and cutting the most common types of self-harm encountered by hospital staff.
Psychiatric hospitals in the spotlight
Irish Independent (Monday, 08 August 2011)
Almost two-thirds of patients in psychiatric hospitals and units are single, according to the latest census. The census found that 20pc of those in psychiatric hospitals were married, six per cent were widowed and almost three per cent were divorced. There has been a 17pc reduction in the number of people resident in psychiatric units and hospitals since 2006. This means a fall of 577 psychiatric patients since the last census in 2006 and a decrease of 86pc in the past 50 years.
Mental health staffing crisis revealed

Irish Examiner (Saturday, 06 August 2011)
The true extent of the staffing crisis in community mental health services has been revealed as figures show just 21 of 124 adult community mental health teams (CMHTs) and one of 53 child and adolescent teams are fully staffed.
Real mental healthcare reform is progressing

Irish Examiner (Saturday, 06 August 2011)
Minister Kathleen Lynch writes “It is essential that individuals with mental illness can reclaim their lives, be involved in society and live as independently as possible. It is accepted that progress on implementation has been slower than expected. However, it is important to recognise and acknowledge that in many parts of the country, substantial change has already been effected and mental health services are pressing ahead with developing new ways of working and initiatives to implement A Vision for Change.”
A broader platform to discuss mental health service concerns
Irish Examiner (Saturday, 06 August 2011)
The role of universities in networks such as the Critical Voices Network (CVNI) is an important one, as a key role of universities is to foster and nurture critical thinking. It is through the CVNI that an environment has been created where different and sometimes conflicting voices and agendas can be heard and respected. In that sense, UCC has begun to play an important and positive role in supporting, enabling and empowering people who have so of- ten been silenced and marginalised.
Our mindset, rooted in a biomedical approach, needs a radical overhaul

Irish Examiner (Saturday, 06 August 2011)
Psychiatric knowledge does not have great predictive power. But even if it did, the sort of philosophy espoused by A Vision for Change would challenge its legal authority. If we are serious about the implementation of A Vision for Change we will need new resources but we will also have to invest the time and energy needed to bring about a cultural change within our services.


Mental Ill Health

Depression linked to strokes in women

Irish Independent (Friday, 12 August 2011)
A six-year study found that a history of depression increased the risk of stroke in post- menopausal women by 29pc. Women who used common antidepressants such as Prozac had a 39pc higher risk. But scientists said they did not believe the drugs alone were to blame and urged women not to stop taking their medication.


Movie suicides rise in line with real life
Irish Examiner (Friday, 12 August 2011)
Depictions of explicit and graphic suicides in movies tripled from 1950 to 2006, according to an analysis of top-grossing films. Lead author Patrick Jarnieson said that although it is impossible to establish a causal connection, the tripling of US teen suicide since 1960 has coincided with the increase in movie suicide portrayals. The results, based on an analysis of 855 top-grossing films, indicate the need for further study of the effects of movie suicides on adolescent audiences.