Webwatch – Mental Health Care

The challenges associated with caring for someone who suffers with psychosis – a set of symptoms that include delusions, hallucinations and confused or disturbed thoughts – can be overwhelming.

Psychosis is a symptom of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and schizoaffective disorder, and can also be a symptom of dementia, some forms of personality disorder, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease and other illnesses.

Attempting to fill in some of the information gaps for people caring for someone with psychosis is mentalhealthcare.org.uk, a website created by the Institute of Psychiatry – a teaching and research organisation that is part of King’s College London – and South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, a health organisation that runs the Maudsley Hospital and many other mental health services in south London. mentalhealthcare.org.uk is run in association with Rethink, a mental health charity for people with severe mental illness and their families.

The site, rebuilt and re-launched in February 2010, bases its information on the results of research carried out to learn more about the causes of psychosis and to develop better treatments or improve existing ones. It offers links to separate web pages for information on a number of fundamental issues – what is psychosis, treatments available (including medications), mental health law, recovery, employment, cannabis, living with psychosis, and information for young people/ young carers. Each page contains information on related resources, websites, videos and telephone helplines where available. An ‘other useful websites’ tab is also available, which has links to government, NHS, legal, research, campaign, and advice and support services for carers.

Users of the website can contact a pharmacist, a psychiatrist or psychologist from the home page. These specialists can be contacted by email with general questions, the answers of which are published publicly on the site. mentalhealthcare.org.uk also provides an email contact for anonymous suggestions and feedback or requests for information that is ‘missing’ on the site.

Visit the website: http://www.mentalhealthcare.org.uk/home