No sexual health history please, we’re British!

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Kirsten Lawson presents the results of a systematic review of observational cross-sectional studies, which looks at the worldwide prevalence of HIV, hepatitis B and hepatitis C in people with severe mental illness.

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What impact are psychotropic drugs having on our physical health?

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John Baker summarises the findings of a recent review of people with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and depression. The study looks at the adverse effects on physical health of psychotropic drugs (antipsychotics, antidepressants and mood stabilisers).

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What is the sociodemographic recipe for happiness?

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Mark Horowitz summarises a recent study that investigates the impact that socio-economic gradients have on mental well-being. He finds to his surprise that the relationship between socio-economic characteristics and low mental well-being is not the inverse of the relationship with high mental well-being.

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Joining the dots: mental and physical health

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Lia Ali and colleagues from the IMPARTS project present the findings of their group discussions about a recent review of mortality in mental disorders. Along the way she discusses the staff training they carried out and the tweet chat they ran to consider the implications of this research, both to individuals and on the global burden of disease.

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Social determinants of mental health: how our societies are making us mentally unwell and what we can do about it

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Mark Horowitz summarises the new WHO and UCL Institute of Health Equity (Michael Marmot) report and research paper on social determinants of mental health. He concludes that it’s time to focus on the root causes of mental distress, namely poverty, unemployment, poor education and social isolation.

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Second National Audit of Schizophrenia highlights lack of progress for service users and carers

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André Tomlin summarises the second National Audit of Schizophrenia, which highlights that many people with schizophrenia are still not getting the high quality psychological and medical treatment they deserve.

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Making parity a reality: RCPsych launch manifesto to improve the nation’s mental health

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The Royal College of Psychiatrists have launched a new manifesto today, which calls on the next government to ensure that mental and physical health are given equal value. André Tomlin summarises the key aims and reflects on what has changed in the world of mental health in the 3 years since the Mental Elf was launched.

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Is there ‘parity of esteem’ in shared decision making between physical and mental health?

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Current health and social care policies determine that people who use services should have choice and control over their care and support. This is particularly important for people with mental health problems who are managing their mental health and designing support in preventative ways to avoid crisis. One way for mental health service practitioners to [read the full story…]