GAPS in Chester’s mental health services are being put under the spotlight.
Chester and District Mind Association used World Mental Health Day to present their “Mind the Gaps” report into mental health services in the area.
The event, held at the city’s Mansion House and attended by Lord Mayor Brian Bailey, aimed to raise awareness of the day and issues regarding Chester’s services for those suffering from mental health problems.
Present were senior members of Chester’s mental health teams, from the Cheshire and Wirral Partnership to charities and service users.
Speakers from Chester Mind unveiled their own research, commissioned by the charity, revealing gaps in provision in the district.
The association says it is campaigning to promote and protect good mental health for everyone in the Chester area while advocating “fairness, honesty and respect” as the approach to dealing with mental health issues throughout society.
The group points out that one in four people in the UK experience mental health problems during their lifetime and it is important to increase public understanding of mental illness and to reduce the stigma and discrimination against those who live with it.
It believes its “Mind the Gaps” report has highlighted “worrying gaps” in the area’s health services which have led service users to feel isolated and misunderstood.
“Mind believes that people who experience mental distress should have access to full support and treatment,” says the association.
It is seeking partnerships which other local organisations in order to “fill the gaps” left by existing services.
Following the reorganisation of local government, the association will be relaunched during Mind week in May 2009 with a new name and logo. Chester and District Mind was founded in 1964.