NEWS FROM MIND AND THE MHF
Embargo: Tuesday 11 January 2011
Mental health charity Mind and charity the Men’s Health Forum have today launched the first ever set of guidelines addressing the mental health needs of men and boys, which aim to improve mental health care and services for men and boys in England.
2.7 million men in England currently have a mental health problem like depression, anxiety or stress (1) tough economic climate: Mind has previously found that 37% of men are feeling worried or low with the top three issues playing on their minds being job security, work and money (2). Despite men and women experiencing mental health problems in roughly equal numbers, men are much less likely to be diagnosed and treated for it and the consequences of this can be fatal – the Men’s Health Forum has highlighted that 75% of all suicides are by men (3).
Delivering Male was commissioned by the National Mental Health Development Unit following Mind’s 2009 Get it off your Chest campaign on men’s mental health and the Men’s Health Forum’s report Untold Problems. Both of these highlighted that men face mental health difficulties which differ to those of women and that men’s needs are not being effectively met. There has also been no national men’s mental health strategy to mirror the one established for women.
The in depth guidelines have been developed following extensive consultation and offer good practice advice on areas such as developing appropriate services, dealing with stigma and supporting male inpatients. It is available free online and printed copies are available to buy from the Men's Health Forum. It is targeted at a wide audience ranging from health professionals and commissioners to the families of men affected by mental distress.
Paul Farmer, Chief Executive of Mind, said:
“Sadly, too many men wrongly believe that admitting mental distress makes them weak, and this kind of self stigma can prevent them from seeking help and ultimately can cost lives. Compounding this alarming situation though is the fact that often when men do reach out for help the appropriate support is not there for them.
I hope that these new guidelines will help to improve mental health care for men and boys by spreading examples of good practice and innovative ideas to those who come into contact with men with mental health problems. It is vital that more services are developed which are tailored to the needs of men and that these are effectively promoted to encourage men to access mental health support early on in their experience of distress.”
Peter Baker, Chief Executive of Men’s Health Forum said:
“It is well established now that men and boys have specific mental health needs. These guidelines have been drawn up based on a very wide evidence base and do an excellent job of covering many of the issues around men’s experience of mental distress, from how to improve men’s awareness of their mental health right through to identifying and addressing male-specific symptoms, in some cases at an early age.”
(1) The Health & Social Care Information Centre, (2009), Adult psychiatric morbidity in England, Results of a household survey
(2) Mind (2009) Men and mental health: Get it off your chest
(3) The Men’s Health Forum’s Lives Too Short campaign and Office for National Statistics (2009), Suicides.
Notes to editors:
Page created on January 10th, 2011
Page updated on January 10th, 2011