What happened during Mental Health Awareness Week?

Last week was Mental Health Awareness Week and the College produced a variety of engaging content to raise awareness of the challenges faced by people with serious mental illnesses, or SMIs.

We published an analysis which showed that more than 26,000 adults with severe mental illness die prematurely each year from preventable physical illnesses.

The College urged everyone to look out for those with severe mental illness and ensure they are receiving professional support for both their physical and mental health problems.

We also called on the Government to close the mortality gap and provide full annual health checks to everyone with a severe mental illness, comprising blood pressure, blood glucose and blood lipids tests plus BMI weight, alcohol status and smoking assessments.

Our analysis received widespread coverage in the media, being picked up by over 200 outlets and reaching 3.5 million people. College Dean, Professor Subodh Dave was also interviewed about SMIs for the LBC breakfast show.


Rehabilitation psychiatry plays a crucial role in helping individuals with SMIs to achieve their full potential and lead fulfilling lives.

In a special podcast episode we spoke to Dr Katie Fergus, a consultant rehabilitation psychiatrist based in Cardiff, with a wealth of experience in this field. She talks about her work and the importance of repairing relationships and re-establishing social skills during the rehabilitation process.

Blog post

In a powerful blog post, we heard from Nathan Randles, one of the College’s Patient Representatives who wrote about the challenges of growing up with an SMI:

“From this point on, my social deficits would only increase. I began to reject the world around me that I believed rejected me. And the fantastical worlds I could read about would form the scaffolding to support my reason for existing. This scaffold could only stand for so long.“


We also saw a trio of news stories from our Devolved Nations that focused on anxiety (the official theme for this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week):

Additionally, the College’s Publishing team produced a special collection which pulled together 19 articles from College journals and books that related to the topic of anxiety.

Read more to receive further information regarding a career in psychiatry