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The Royal College of Psychiatrists Improving the lives of people with mental illness

November 2011

College news
Other news



President’s blog: Results of our Health and Social Care Bill survey College news



President’s blog: Results of our Health and Social Care Bill survey

“A huge thank you to all our members in England who took the time to respond to our survey on the Health and Social Care Bill. 1,890 of you responded (a response rate of 20%) and you made your views of the current reforms extremely clear.”

New Dean: Dr Wendy Burn







President Elect: Professor Dinesh Bhugra







PTC Chair: Dr Alice Lomax







Friends of the College Archives (FOCA)
  • Rights and privileges for Specialist Associates of the College

    The College Officers are delighted to announce that Council has just supported an extension of the privileges accorded to this valued group of associates.  



  • New Dean

    We would like to congratulate Dr Wendy Burn who was recently elected as Dean. Wendy is a consultant Old Age Psychiatrist from Leeds and Head of the Yorkshire and Humber School of Psychiatry. “I am very grateful to all those who voted for me. I have been passionate about training since I started as a Consultant in Leeds in 1990 and it’s wonderful to have the chance to make a difference. At the moment I am getting to know people and finding out how things work. As I start to make changes over the coming months, I’ll keep you in touch with what I am planning. I am keen that College members and trainees are consulted and listened to. Feel free to email me with your thoughts and concerns, I can’t promise to answer every message but I promise to read and consider them all.”   



  • Enewsletter polls: your views wanted

    Results of last month’s poll:

    • I have confidence that the College will be effective in negotiating safeguards to protect mental health services within the potential new commissioning arrangements? 39% agreed vs. 61% disagreed.


    This month's poll:

    We would like your views on the following:



  • College vacancies

    Psychotherapy Faculty member for the MRCPsych CASC Panel

    The College wishes to appoint a member from the Psychotherapy Faculty to join the panel responsible for writing stations used in the Clinical Assessment of Skills and Competencies (CASC) examination. The CASC Panel meets four times a year with each member expected to write, on average, 8 stations per year outside of meeting times. The successful applicant would also be expected to attend the CASC examination that takes place twice a year in Sheffield. Contact Juliet Mayne, Examinations Project Development Manager for further details.


    E-group on Confidentiality

    The Special Committee on Professional Practice and Ethics has a remit covering issues of confidentiality, ethics and professional practice. We are setting up an egroup of people prepared to advise us on confidentiality issues. Three members of the committee are already working in this area: Mike Kingham, Gwen Adshead and Susan Benbow. They would like to link in with the egroup to develop work on confidentiality. If you have an interest or expertise in this area, and would be able to support this work, mainly by email, but with the occasional telephone conference, please send a short email application to Claire Churchill by 30 November 2011. Please include information about your qualifications, expertise, and briefly state what you have to offer the Committee.



  • World Psychiatric Association: Election results

    We would like to congratulate the following members of the College who were elected at the recent General Assembly in Buenos Aires:

    • President Elect: Professor Dinesh Bhugra

    • Secretary of Sections: Dr Afzel Javed.

    Professor Linda Gask was also re-elected (unopposed) as the Zonal Rep for Western Europe.



  • Update on the Joint Commissioning Panel for Mental Health  

    A new guide into commissioning community mental health services started this month, chaired by Professor Helen Lester from the Royal College of General Practitioners. A progress report is now available.



  • Psychiatric Trainees’ Committee: results from recent elections: Congratulations

    The Psychiatric Trainees’ Committee (PTC) is a standing committee of the Council, formed of representatives of Senior Trainees and Pre-Membership Psychiatric Trainees of each Division. At its recent Annual Residential Conference, the following members were elected:

    • Chair: Dr Alice Lomax
    • Vice chair: Dr Muj Husain
    • Secretary: Dr Hannah Cappleman

    For further details of the other electees around the country, see the College website.



  • Friends of the College Archives (FOCA): we would like your contributions

    The FOCA group was established to support the College in the preservation, promotion and use of its archival heritage. FOCA produces three e-newsletters a year. They include articles about our archival collection, and current news and events relating to the history of psychiatry. Dr Fiona Subotsky, the Honorary Archivist, is appealing to members interested in the history of the College / British and Irish psychiatry to contribute articles. For information on how to contribute, contact the College Archivist.


Duty of Candour in health care






GMC consults on two future pillars of medical professionalism



  • Duty of Candour in health care  

    A consultation has been launched which sets out proposals for requiring NHS providers to increase transparency and admit when things go wrong with health care. The contractual Duty of Candour in health care will be an enforceable duty on providers to be open and honest with patients or their families when things go wrong, and encouraging the NHS to learn lessons. The consultation runs to 2 January 2012. The College will be responding to this, so if you would like to contribute, email by 15 December 2011.


  • Caring for our future: shared ambitions for care and support

    The Law Commission and the Commission on Funding of Care and Support are seeking views on the priorities for improving care and support for people who use care and support services. Their report, Caring for our future, together with the Government’s Vision for Adult Social Care, will discuss priorities for reform. This consultation runs to 2 December 2011; the results will inform a Government White Paper due for publication in 2012.



  • GMC consults on two future pillars of medical professionalism 

    The GMC has set out new proposals for how it will support doctors’ professional development, and what will be expected of doctors themselves, in two consultations. The first consultation asks for feedback on what doctors and employers should be doing on CPD and how the GMC can support doctors in keeping up-to-date. The second consultation seeks views on the supporting regulations that will set out the legal powers, rights and responsibilities which underpin the revalidation process.




Royal College of GPs - Results of latest survey







World Mental Health Day (10 October 2011)







Grey Pride: campaign to appoint a Minister for Older People: petition







Home Office - Body Confidence teaching pack








Stephen Fry


News from other organisations and the NHS



Health and Social Care Bill

  • Royal College of GPs - Results of latest survey

    More than 70% of respondents to a poll carried out by the Royal College of General Practitioners say they strongly agree or agree that the Health and Social Care Bill should be withdrawn.

  • Senior doctors to lobby Lords on Health and Social Care Bill

    All the Medical Royal Colleges called on Peers to make substantial changes to the Health and Social Care Bill. In a briefing paper delivered to all members of the Upper House, the Academy argues that too much emphasis is being placed on competition and choice at the expense of integrating patient care and may widen rather than reduce health inequalities. The Academy also calls for clarification on the public health proposals and commitments to be honoured regarding doctors’ education and training.


To celebrate World Mental Health Day (10 October 2011)

  • United Nations: greater resources for mental disorders needed

    Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged the world to allocate more resources for the treatment of mental disorders, saying that too little funding was devoted to mental health despite the debilitating nature of the illnesses and the fact they can be prevented or treated effectively.

  • Northern Ireland: Framework for mental health launched

    Health Minister Edwin Poots launched his Department’s Service Framework for Mental Health and Wellbeing. This framework takes forward the values and principles of the Bamford Review. It sets out clearly the key standards in services that mental health patients and clients can expect and that service commissioners and providers must seek to deliver.

  • Mental Health Hero’ Awards

    The founders of Mental Healthy launched the UK’s first Mental Health Hero Awards to recognise the unsung heroes of mental health. Teaming up with mental health charities SANE, The Mental Health Foundation, The Centre for Mental Health, and Emergence, these awards are to give credit and recognition to those who have contributed to the field of mental health. Mental Healthy invites you to send in applications. Closing date: 10 December 2011.

  • Troops feel mental illness stigma

    Combat Stress which looks after thousands of veterans, including many psychologically scarred by action in Iraq and Afghanistan, launched the next phase of its The Enemy Within fundraising drive. Iraq war veteran Neil Blower, who has written a novel drawing on his own experiences tracing a squaddie's battle with post-traumatic stress disorder said the UK was "sitting on a timebomb" of mental health issues resulting from recent conflicts.


Grey Pride: campaign to appoint a Minister for Older People: petition

Despite making up 40% of the voting public, there is currently no minister dedicated to representing the views of older people - a fully-fledged Minister for Older People who would hold the government to account and ensure the needs of older people are understood and represented. Grey Pride provides all the tools needed for people to get involved with the campaign.


4Children: Postnatal depression: the experience of families

Suffering in Silence looks into the experiences of women and families with postnatal depression.  It finds that as many as 35,000 women have the condition each year, with serious repercussions for themselves and their families. Half of all women suffering from postnatal depression do not seek professional treatment, and more are not getting the right treatment quickly enough.


Department of Health

  • £20 million to knock down mental health stigma 

    The Government is joining forces with Comic Relief to help tackle mental health stigma, with funding of up to £20 million for Time to Change, the leading stigma and anti-discrimination campaign, run by Mind and Rethink Mental Illness. This is the first time that the long-standing campaign has received Government funding.

  • Payment by Results Draft: 2012-2013

    The DoH has published Payment by Results Draft 2012-13 Mental Health Guidance. This draft guidance is intended for all NHS organisations providing mental health services in preparation for 2012-13 and commissioners of mental health services.

  • Summary Care Record (SCR) to benefit patients with long term conditions

    The SCR is a secure, electronic patient record which is currently being introduced in England to help patients who have difficulties communicating their needs. David Congdon from Mencap said: “For patients with a learning disability, the potential benefit of the SCR would be if they are able to add key information about their needs that they want clinicians to know at the point of treatment. This could be important information about how they communicate, for example, how they show they are in pain. The record could also provide contact details for their carer."


National Statistics: two new publications

Drug chart standards to reduce hospital prescribing errors

The Academy of Medical Royal Colleges, along with the Royal Pharmaceutical Society and the Royal College of Nursing, have produced a set of standards for the design of hospital in-patient prescription charts aimed to help eliminate prescribing errors.


Home Office - Body Confidence teaching pack

A new teaching pack to help children understand how images in the media are altered and the impact these have on self-esteem was launched by Equalities Minister Lynne Featherstone. The teaching pack marks an important contribution to the government’s ongoing Body Confidence campaign.


More than 17,000 children separated from their mother through imprisonment

A new report from the Howard League for Penal Reform, Voice of the Child, has shown that at least 17,000 children are separated from their mother every year causing long term emotional, social, material and psychological damage, with little to no dedicated support.


NHS excludes 60,000 adults with ADHD in Scotland.

This is one of the key findings of a survey of all NHS Boards in Scotland by ‘Addressing The Balance’, a charity set up to promote understanding of and to campaign for treatment of ADHD. In October 2011, the lack of NHS provision for adult ADHD sufferers was considered for the first time in the Scottish Parliament when Addressing The Balance formally presented its findings in the form of a petition to Holyrood calling on the Scottish Government to catch up with England.


Broadmoor man makes legal history

The mental health tribunal for Albert Haines, who has been diagnosed with a personality disorder, offered a rare glimpse into the usually hidden world of the hospital. Members of the press were given full access to the proceedings, which despite the sensitive mental health issues being discussed, were reported for the first time.


Personal budgets: making them work for service users

A report on personal budgets was published by the NHS Confederation's Mental Health Network. The report draws together evidence from polling, focus groups and in-depth interviews to give the views of service users, clinicians and 40 local NHS and social care leaders across the country. The Network sets out five tests that the NHS and Government should meet in order to make personal budgets work for service users.   


Stephen Fry takes over as President of mental health charity Mind

In September, Stephen Fry officially took up his new role as President of the mental health charity Mind.


Like stars on Earth




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