the purchasing and provision of mental health services were presented
today in an awards ceremony attended by health minister Paul Boateng.
Amongst the awards, the£5,000 department of health sponsored
encouraging the development of the full range of care required by
mentally ill people.
Delivering the opening at the Gosforth Park Hotel, Newcastle, Paul
'Mental health is a high priority for this new government. It remains a key development area. It will be an important theme in the Green Paper we plan to publish later this year - 'Our Healthier Nation'.
'We are once again fortunate in having partners who share our
commitment to developing services. We are very pleased to be working
with Newcastle City Health NHS Trust, the Sainsbury Centre for Mental
Health and Breakthrough. We are also particularly grateful to Lilly
Psychiatry for their support.
'My congratulations go to the winner of the department of health
sponsored award The Leatherhead Clubhouse. The award reflects the
increasing importance and recognition being given to employment
issues for people with a mental illness. Such an approach reflects
the government's desire to reduce dependency and remove the barriers
that promote social exclusion.
'The voluntary sector plays a key role in developing the range of
care required by mentally ill people. This new government is
particularly keen to see services based on partnership between all
the stakeholders. It is exciting that this project is very much user
driven and has the support of the local health authority and social
The Mental Health Awards also help to raise awareness of mental
health issues and combat the stigmatisation of mental illness.
Negative or distorted images of mental illness add greatly to the
suffering of those who have mental health problems, and their
friends, relatives and careers. People suffering from mental
illness emphasise that stigmatisation is one of the most debilitating
aspects of their illness.
Mr Boateng continued:
'I am confident the Mental Health Awards enhance the profile of
mental health services, reduce stigma and promote the development of
services people want.'
1. This annual scheme is organised by the Newcastle City Health
NHS Trust (NCHT) in partnership with the Department of Health and in
association with Lilly Psychiatry. It builds on the success of the
Sir Graham Day Award, organised annually since 1992 by NCHT. Award
sponsors also include the Sainsbury Centre for Mental Health and
2. The award categories are:
-- The Department of Health Voluntary Sector Award - is for
voluntary organisations which demonstrate good practice in
providing services for people with mental health problems.
-- The Sir Graham Day Award - continues to reward innovation
and management in mental health services, focusing on
effective partnerships between agencies. Sir Graham Day,
the Award's namesake, is a retired industrialist and former
member of the NHS policy Board. This Award is sponsored by
Newcastle City Health NHS Trust. (Prize£5,000)
-- The Breakthrough/Lilly Psychiatry Award - is for examples
of working partnerships between professionals and users in
mental health services. Nominations for the Breakthrough
Award are invited from service users. This Award is
sponsored by Lilly Psychiatry. Breakthrough is a
publication for anyone with an interest in mental health,
and is written and produced by users. (Prize£5,000)
-- The Sainsbury Centre For Mental Health Award - is for joint
working between primary and secondary care teams and is
sponsored by the Sainsbury Centre for Mental Health, which
undertakes research, service evaluation, service
development and training in mental health. (Prize£5,000)
3. The Voluntary Sector Award winners The Leatherhead Clubhouse
provides services for people with severe and enduring mental illness.
It is the first free-standing clubhouse in the UK and is responsible
for all its own personnel, finance and administration. It is a
support project for people with long-term mental health problems
which follows a non-clinical approach. Community support services are
provided by members and staff of the clubhouse and include help with
benefit entitlements, housing and advocacy, as well as assistance in
finding quality medical, psychological, pharmacological and substance
abuse services in the community. The clubhouse is also committed to
securing a range of choices of safe, decent and affordable housing
Members get the opportunity to secure employment, through a mixture
of part-time, time-limited placements whereby the clubhouse
guarantees coverage during member absences; and independent
employment whereby members are helped to secure and hold down
permanent employment. Users are empowered, through employment and
education, to break the cycle of dependency.
4. There were two runner up highly commended projects - the
Wokingham MIND Crisis House and the Hulme Action Resource Project.