Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Birmingham & Solihull Mental Health Foundation Trust Where Is Your PD User Network ?

Where is the Community Personality Disorder User Network ?

While Staff Meet Up At A Nice Hotel ?

Got any defensive answers for this BSMHFT ? Come on - you all placed a CPDS service in the wrong area in the North of Birmingham UK . Didn't you ? What a waste of time and money ...

From what we hear, we wonder if it was designed to get minimum coverage , uptake and promotion to end up with the low numbers of uptakes that has made you lot self justifiably drag it off somewhere else . What a lousy deal this is for its so called mission statement to support people with long term issues of reverberating child abuse post trauma etc .

The Staff who were employed to create the User Network did what exactly ? What outreach pamphlets ? Outreach Groups ? Where ? Anyone know ? Everyone knows now your CPDS service before it barely started is planned to move off . Make it available flexibly and re-state it will create support groups for people in pain over their child abused history. Don't re-hive it off into an other unsuitable area for politically correct reasons where it did few people any good ..

Meanwhile your staff are off to a nice lunch at a nice hotel in Stafford with a minimum of PD Users in attendance and too often mainly those with network cream up their asses because in fact they should be protesting for a proper service in Birmingham instead of looking for NHS self-advantaging User-jobs..

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Mental Health Community Personality Disorder Service Birmingham Under Threat ?

UserWatch is aware from several Birmingham Service Users that all is not well with the Community Personality Disorder Services in the North of the city .

Our understanding is the newly designed (post Main House) CPDS stationed itself at a Day Centre known as the Soho Hopkins Day Centre near Handsworth - itself possibly scheduled for some kind of service re-design that may even involve partial closure .

Our information about the CPDS is it was supposed to provide a Tier 1 - 2 Day Service programme with a mixture of group-type therapy and activities . We are not sure how many Service Users took this up. Rumours suggest it was a small number put off by the location . We are certainly aware of criticisms of where this service was located in Soho Road near Handsworth . Soho Road represents an inner city area with a tough reputation and the question is was it the right place to station a CPD service that dealt with vulnerable people (males and females) with child abuse issues and sensitivities ? After all the CPDS acknowledged it had to deal with those issues in the people it was supposed to help .

We hear concerns too have arisen over what is happening with the User and Carer CPDS network . Apparently both these types of networks were supposed to exist contractually and the question is whether the Primary Care Trust that set these re-designed services up has had any time to performance manage the Service Level Delivery written out contractually to cover what the "networks" were supposed to achieve .. We think they've achieved very little indeed . That is what is being said to us !

The word is the CPDS has retreated for a time to its (as Service Users say) "Coffee and Bicuits Headquarters" in the North of the City which is near the Erdington Forensic Ardenleigh Centre . Its also rumoured it will not be staying there but probably retracting into some part of the Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Foundation Trust - southwards .. Its the usual trend according to some Users ..

Friday, August 27, 2010

Mental Health User Apartheid ? One Rachel Fits All?

Its Proof Of The Upper Downery NHS Law

Illustration and poem courtesy of
Silvis Up The Pill of Hillvis Rivers

Jack Said :
There's a being
In the needle lune
Up there in the heart sky
God of prick
Satan cold science
Lacking Buddha's eye
I heard from the media today
How an ex-patient-psychologist wants everyone
Back to work
And I saw the muffle shuffle of local patients
That she implies are trained to shirk ..
Anal snakes now writhe
Tongues and languages curl
And the media shits on weakness
And the hate-show speeds its whirl ....

New Labour's UK mental health policies are still dragging about and waiting for the Coalition to power them up again . Mental Health Day Centres across the UK will be further targeted with new hot house schemes and Third Sector partners trying to socially engineer the long term mentally unwell into training and recovery and other types of choiceless mono-culture supply-side bollox which do not fit needs . For all the talk of modernisation in the UK we only ended up with a User elite selling everyone else out and promoting their own groups as the rest of everyone else . What do you think ?

Was there a solution ? Yeah .. Legal Patient Choice of recovery and condition management post crisis ..

We see the UK Guardian spider-writer Lady O-hero interviewed someone with new ideas who we hear was some kind of (service) "User",  now a NHS psychologist, speaks out against things like therapy dependence and yet implies dependency on meds is fine and work is implied as the main aim of "recovery" ... Right - gotcha. The vision they propose is "theirs though" and a mass projection of that ..? Yeah, how very individualized, but truthfully applicable to only  some people like that person wouldn't you think?  Some people do need support (dependency) for a very long time . The need of sanctuary is not a moral sin or necessarily a treatment failure.

What the UK Guardian never railed against consistently was the lack of legal Patient Choice in mental health (post crisis) and thus we are left with no equality of effect with the general population who can choose a consultant and secondary care provider. It was for instance , eminently possible to create patient choice mechanisms in Personality Disorders and post-crisis management which could have led to more recovery choices and initially inside the talking-emotionally supporting therapies ..But the Guardian looked the other way ..The law was set in Jan 2009 against Patient Choice in mental health . It still has not changed . Meanwhile under Labour the expansion of non-productive middle classes grew . So much for real productive expansions in the export trades like manufacturing .. (currently specialist manufacturting in the UK generates £ 300 Billion)

There is still not enough therapies for social damages in the community - we are hearing of real lives and real demand from people who have lost others, lost networks - lost babies - lost face in ethnic communities - never had parents - raped in care - sent mad by the system and more .. And Lady O-hero goes Guardian-ing away .. Guardian over what really , narrowness and limited top down social engineering approaches ..?

Forget people , lets make equations of "we imply we know best" eh and make it look like we are liberal and intelligent rather than right-wing and post Victorian ..

What a 19th century UK work-arse approach all this sad recovery anti sanctuary stuff in mental health care still is,  and we at UserWatch expect meds and SSRI's Prozac and Seroxat and Effexors and hills of pills to be suddenly health service popular again. The UK has the second biggest defence budget in the world an expanded and productivity-lacking middle class, and a hopeless massive class of people left in the wake of global development .

Positive depression is mental health reality of realistic vision ... Lets deal with an expanded overpaid middle class first please and the overpaid corporate bankers too and create sanctuary and individualised plans for life at the mental health care ends ..

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Mental Health Arts : Jerry's Art And His Wings


Video By Silvis Rivers

Salute To Jerry

Jerry is real enough and the UserWatchers amongst us know plenty like him . There's a bravery and pathos about some Schitzophrenics and the damaged lives they lead . The positive side of Jerry is his art and the way he bounces through life on it . A Day Centre man who has often lived through his internal trials of suicidal thoughts and someone who cannot care for his own life properly but through his damages he still lives on painting and drawing , with his thick black lines always containing him and his arts ..

Salute to you Jerry ....

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Take NOTE Sandwell Mental Health Trust - Patient Safety Alert UK


Sourced To The National Association For LINks Members (NALM)

Local Involvement Members who monitor Health and Social Care services in the UK have banded together in some parts of the the UK to form NALM . UserWatch has been sent a bulletin sourced to them which is self explanatory :


Dear Members, if a Trust that you monitor is on this list below we advise you to contact the Chief Executive urgently to ask what action they are taking to implement the SAFETY ALERTS issued by the National Patients Safety Agency. These alerts are meant to prevent deaths and serious harm to patients. We also recommend contacting your CQC regional manager to ask what action they are taking to ensure compliance with this critical safety tool. All of the Trust shown below have been asked by the DH to comply with the saftey alerts, yet some have increased the number not attended to. These are marked in green. The full report is attached.

All the best. Malcolm Alexander, Chair, NALM






Action against Medical Accidents (AvMA – the charity for patient safety and justice) has today published the findings of its latest research into whether NHS trusts are implementing potentially life-saving patient safety alerts issued by the National Patient Safety Agency (NPSA). The results make disturbing reading.

In spite of the public concern following AvMA’s first report in February 2010, which prompted the Department of Health to issue a reminder letter to all trusts NALM is collaborating with AvMA to ensure that all hospital and PCT comply with patient safety alerts :

"NALM is appalled that 25 hospitals in England have failed to take action in response to 10 or more Safety Alerts issued by the National Patients Safety Agency (NPSA).

We are alarmed that 4 Primary Care Trusts (PCTs), the bodies that pay for local health services and are supposed to ensure the highest standards of care, have between them failed to respond to 57 Safety Alerts.

Safety Alerts are issued by the NPSA to reduce the risk of harm to patients. In some cases failure to deal with a Safety Alert can lead to the death of a patient, incapacity or life long suffering.

NALM has also asked for assurances from the Department of Health and the NHS Litigation Authority action will be taken in every case where an NHS Trust has ignored a Safety Alert. We will also take steps to ensure that evidence of failure to comply is published in every part of the county." ·

As of 7th June 2010; there were 1,242 incidences of individual patient safety alerts, for which the deadline had passed, not having been complied with; 63% of trusts had failed to comply with at least one alert.

Only 37% declared that they had ‘completed’ all required actions in all alerts or that there was ‘no action required’; 29 trusts had not complied with 10 or more alerts. 11 of these are ‘Foundation’ trusts.

Even the extra-urgent “Rapid Response Alert’ on ‘Oxygen Safety in Hospitals’ (deadline for completion: 29th March 2010) had not been complied with by 116 trusts.

‘Safer Use of Injectable Medicines’ (Deadline 31st March 2008) had still not been complied with by 67 trusts. Both alerts, like the vast majority of them, had been sparked by a number of avoidable deaths and serious injuries.

As of 16th June, the national regulator, the Care Quality Commission (CQC), had not contacted a single trust identified by our report of February 2010 – even those with multiple alerts outstanding, or alerts which were years past the deadline, to demand compliance or ask them to explain themselves.
There remains no central policy or guidance on who should be monitoring compliance with patient safety alerts, or who should intervene with trusts who are not complying; AvMA Chief Executive, Peter Walsh, said:

“These figures are staggering bearing in mind that we are dealing with recognised life and death issues, and the Department of Health itself issued a wake-up call to trusts following our last report. There can be no excuse for trusts continuing to put lives at unnecessary risk by not complying with these alerts. We commend the 146 trusts who have shown that the requirement to implement alerts by the deadline can be met for their commitment to patient safety. We are also grateful that at long last the CQC is taking some action, but we remain deeply concerned. Urgent action needs to be taken now over non compliant trusts. We also need to know how, following the cuts announced recently including abolition of the NPSA, the system can be made robust in the future”.

AvMA are seeking an urgent meeting with Ministers and the bodies responsible for quality and safety in the NHS to discuss the report and AvMA’s recommendations for addressing the problems it identified.

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Mental Health - From Labour's Rigged Society To The Con-Dem's Bottom Up Boggery ?





"First, we will help to catalyse social action by making better use of existing civic institutions. For example, we will devolve more powers to town halls, give new functions to post offices, protect local pubs and take action to safeguard local shops.

This paper for the first time explains how we will apply this approach to the civil service, one of Britain’s largest civic institutions. By making use of these institutions, we can help to embed a powerful new social norm on social action and community activism."

But then we have the thumbs up for the charitocracy ( that means MIND and Rethink and others will become the new MH State )

"First, public service reform. Our public sector reform programme is designed to cut costs while improving standards, and to enable social enterprises, charities and voluntary groups to play a leading role in delivering public services and tackling deep-rooted social problems. That is why we have developed a detailed framework for opening up public services to new suppliers, and improving accountability and value for money through techniques like payment-by-results, competitive tendering, publishing performance information, and giving people the opportunity to choose between competing providers.

To make these reforms work, we need to give new and existing social enterprises, charities and voluntary groups the long-term incentives they need to develop and deliver innovative and high quality public services, and this paper sets out new plans to do that. Specifically, this paper sets out new policies to provide social enterprises with the start-up funding and support they need to bid for government contracts or work towards delivering services under a payment-by-results model. "

Jeese then we come to the new State self funding Dad's Army (5000) and Care Raid Warden Patrols :

We will establish National Centres for Community Organising. We will fund the training of 5,000 independent community organisers over the lifetime of the next Parliament. This national army of community organisers will have the skills needed to raise funds to pay for their own salaries, help communities to establish and operate neighbourhood groups, and help neighbourhood groups to tackle difficult social challenges. In the US, the community organising endowment established by Saul Alinsky has trained generations of community organisers, including President Obama.

We think all this is a recipe not for the ex working class communities to band together and re-invent themselves into community groups and co-ops with real empowerment - but in fact an incentive for a new middle class take over of everyone's lives in an age-ing stressed out country...

However we are thinking of starting up a new DIY Coffin Making scheme ...

What do you think - read the BIG Society Document ..

Mental Health : Sue Turner Trust CEO Loses Press Complaint Suicide Trio Attempt



Patient rights to have a voice are so often wrapped up inside the weaving corporate politics of NHS Trusts and partly this looks like such a case where the complicated context is of three patients who decided on a triple suicide attempt mixed into an alleged lack of Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Foundation Trust consultation over the closure of their special "Main House" Borderline PD Unit in February 2010 .

The Birmingham Mail did a thorough job of reporting the drama and used photo's in one of its several reports which were pixellated of the patients to prevent identification.

Sue Turner CEO of the Birmingham Mental Health Foundation Trust (pixellated above) made a complaint to the Press Complaints Commission against the Birmingham Mail for using the photos but the PCC have not upheld it . It was a sound judgment we think not to uphold the claim that these patients required the claimed level of confidentiality that Sue Turner implied .

The PCC claimed a relative of one of the distressed patients on behalf of that patient had supported the right to have a photo of them used . According to the New Statesman :

"journalists said a parent of one of the patients had supported the use of the images and that they had given a voice to mental health patients who had complained they were being ignored."

All of the patients involved were distressed at the closure of Main House . It was also locally rumoured that the BSMHFT had used legal advice to foreshorten any fuller consultation on the Main House closure. In fact it was the Birmingham East and North Primary Care Trust that created pressure for a public and patient consultation of a full 3 months to occur. Pressure too for that came from patients and groups . That much seems partly borne out at the Health and Overview Scrutiny Committee (HOSC) which ordered at a scrutiny hearing that a full 3 months consultation should be observed.

Users in the PD (personality disordered) community outside of Main House though had spoken to each other about how the despair of the suicide three did also have the appearance of a desperate social political gesture . Why so desperate, and was their desperation actually the product of being really under-informed ?

What is still something of a mystery is this was a local context where Main House Borderline PD Unit was slowly losing its viability over several years and of its 24 beds less than half were taken over the last two years before it closed .

How many Users close to its actions and services knew this? . How strong is the User-informed culture in Birmingham ? Does the BSMHFT encourage enough openess to patients of detail about its operations? BSMHFT pride itself on an internal User Voice mechanism yet it comes under the control of the Trust. In mental health in Birmingham there is NO INDEPENDENT USER VOICE ..

Main House Unit viability was based on outside PCT's across the country purchasing its rather exclusive services which often involved people uprooting themselves for a year. Its staff costs , over the last two years of its operation, were not paid for by the "Out Of Area" PCT purchasing mechanism but in fact more by the BSMHF Trust. The Trust were making a "loss" .....

The Primary Care Trust at Birmingham East and North also from public domain HOSC paperwork we examined could have done far better at making sure Tier 4 (severe) BPD patients had provisions in place some time ago - maybe dovetailing User-visits to new places where provisions were to be purchased . The PCT estimated that in Birmingham, Tier 4 (severe Borderline symptoms) would only exist in 3 people per million so why there was a problem here between everyone, namely Trust and PCT provisioners getting this right for 3 people?

Its still a mystery and one which may well be being investigated . The Birmingham Mail should be made aware of that ..

The PCC also stated : (source Press Gazette )

"The PCC said that while it did not receive a complaint from a patient or their families it had taken the complaint forward as the NHS trust was an interested party."


P.s. For the record UserWatch declares its magical love for Sue Turner and the fact that she is a pixie (pixellated) truly elates us ... Mwahhh ...(catch our pixellated lips below)