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Health bosses welcome MPs' focus on mental health
2:00pm Saturday 23rd June 2012 in Devon
HEALTH bosses in Mid Devon have welcomed a pledge by MPs to put mental health at the top of the agenda after a mass outpouring of support for people with mental health problems.
A 4½-hour parliamentary debate last Friday saw four MPs speaking out about their own mental health problems – an emotional first for a parliamentary session.
Hundreds of people with mental health problems had contacted their MP in the run-up to the debate, urging them to speak out about local and national issues.
Ian Tulley, chief executive of Devon Partnership NHS Trust, said: “During the last week we’ve heard politicians talking passionately and publicly about their own personal experiences, re-stating the need to raise awareness and calling for adequate resour-ces to be allocated to mental health services.
“I’m sure I speak for everyone in mental health when I say how welcome and ref-reshing it is to hear prominent people talk openly, publicly and without embarrassment about their personal mental health experiences.
“If we know one thing for certain about mental illness it’s that it touches almost every one of us at some point in our lives.
“Only by increasing people’s awareness about the issues and busting some of the myths which still surround mental illness will we really start to move the debate forward, and give mental health the profile and recognition it needs and des-erves.”
A wide range of subjects were covered during the debate, including the need for people to talk more openly about mental health, to break down taboos and ensure that everyone is able to ask for help when they need it, and ways in which employers can reduce stress, anxiety and depression in the workplace.