Mental health in Thoughts from the Centre
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By Debi Rhodes, COO & Clients & Industries Lead, Life Sciences & Healthcare
As part of last week’s Mental Health Awareness Week, Deloitte ran a number of events to raise the profile of this important issue and the support that is available to people. One of the messages that resonated with me was the importance of talking and sharing personal stories. Having just returned from maternity leave, it felt timely to share my brief experience of one of the mental health issues that temporarily affected me, but is an ongoing challenge for so many people – anxiety.
Stories give people permission to talk – they give staff, patients and their families a voice that touches everyone who listens. Last week we published our report Time to care which highlights the importance of supporting the physical and mental wellbeing of hospital staff in order to ensure a sustainable and effective workforce. This Thursday I attended an inspiring event called ‘The DNA of Care’, a shared learning event hosted by NHS England. The event showcased a series of digital stories developed by Patient Voices and an evaluation of how digital stories are being used to provide a voice to NHS staff as part of their DNA of Care project.1 During the event I was struck by the power of staff stories and how these stories could help tackle some of the challenges identified in our research. I have long been a strong advocate of the power of digital stories. This week’s blog shares some of my insights from this event and why I believe digital stories are not only incredibly impactful and cathartic for the people involved in telling their stories, but can help others understand the amazing courage, resilience and compassion of NHS staff.
Earlier this year we published our report, At a tipping point? Workplace mental health and wellbeing. In conducting our research, and since publication, we have engaged in numerous conversations on how perceptions around mental health and wellbeing are shifting. While it is inspiring to see the many initiatives that are underway around raising awareness of the importance maintaining both mental and physical health, what matters more is that all of us engage more effectively in our own health and wellbeing, including understanding our own trigger points and what measures we can take to manage our own mental resilience. My trigger has always been the length and quality of my sleep, and given this week is Deloitte’s Clients and Markets’ mental health awareness week, I thought I would use this week’s blog to share the evidence available on sleep hygiene, wellbeing and performance.
This week we’re delighted to feature a blog written by one of our US colleagues. In his ‘My Take’ Greg Reh (Principal, US and Global Life Sciences Leader, Deloitte Consulting LLP) discusses the findings from Deloitte’s 2015 survey of US Health Care Consumers and shares his insights on patient engagement:
“An empowered consumer is the new breakthrough drug.” This is how Daniel Kraft, Medicine and Neuroscience Chair at Singularity University, began his talk at last week’s Financial Times and Deloitte Digital Health Summit. And, it’s true: In a health care environment that is continually transforming, a patient-centric marketplace holds important considerations for stakeholders as they seek to adapt, innovate, and grow.
This week we are pleased to share perspectives on how behaviour change can help tackle harmful drinking from our colleagues Liz Hampson and Nicole Malouf, – This is a short thought piece to be presented at The Global Chief Medical officers Network.
In May 2014, Public Health England and the Alzheimer’s Society, as part of the Prime Ministers Dementia Challenge, joined forces to launch a new campaign to encourage people to become Dementia Friends. Dementia Friends is a social movement which aims to create one million "Dementia Friends" by 2015. Currently there are over 500,000 Dementia Friends in the UK. This week, Deloitte’s entire Executive became Dementia Friends and, in leading by example, hope to boost the number by encouraging other Deloitte employees, and hopefully their clients, to follow suit.
Mental health is regularly referred to as the ‘Cinderella of all NHS Cinderella services’. In recognition of this, the coalition Government’s 2011 outcomes strategy No Health Without Mental Health, set out plans to improve people’s mental health and wellbeing.