mentalmedia

Serving those who advocate for mental health and reducing stigma

Posted by tony serve on February 3, 2010

More info soon on Perth visit by Ruben HURRICANE Carter for justicewa.com M/while enjoy sm cool Jail Blues here http://ping.fm/28ac7

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Posted by tony serve on February 3, 2010

Testing ping.fm on iPhone.

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First Close Look At Stimulated Brain

Posted by tony serve on August 31, 2009

First Close Look At Stimulated Brain click title for link to full story

ScienceDaily (Aug. 30, 2009) — For over a century, scientists have been using electrical stimulation to explore and treat the human brain. The technique has helped identify regions responsible for specific neural functions—for instance, the motor cortex and pleasure center—and has been used to treat a variety of conditions from Parkinson’s disease to depression. Yet no one has been able to see what actually happens at the cellular level when the brain is electrically prodded.

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Perth Workshop for familes with 1 or more people living with mental llness, you are not alone :)

Posted by tony serve on August 29, 2009

Click the Pic to fo to COMIC WA help & resources for families of mentall ill

Click the Pic to visit COMIC WA for help & resources for families of mentally ill people of all ages. Support is offered and received

Registration form for for this excellent Workshop

Registration form for for this excellent Workshop

Details of the workshop; The Effects of Trauma on the Developing Child- Implications for Treatment

Details of the workshop; The Effects of Trauma on the Developing Child- Implications

Join COMIC WA and help us light the way for those who follow

Join COMIC WA and help us light the way for those who follow

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Fact and Fiction – Big Pharma busted again as new novel highlights the tragedy of prescription drugs

Posted by tony serve on August 6, 2009

Just weeks away from the launch of Pamela Glasner’s novel “Fining Emmaus” and one of the book’s underlying themes is being echoed in reality.

The historic fantasy is also a meticulously researched commentary on the “treatment” of people deemed to be mentally ill, especially the effect on real people of efforts by Big Pharma to sell more drugs.

Enjoy this short video on “Finding Emmaus” and read below how Big Pharma gets busted for using Ghost writers to lobby lawmakers considering crucial health reforms in the US.

Newly unveiled court documents show that ghostwriters paid by a pharmaceutical company played a major role in producing 26 scientific papers backing the use of hormone replacement therapy in women, suggesting that the level of hidden industry influence on medical literature is broader than previously known.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/05/health/research/05ghost.html?_r=1

The use of anti-depressants has doubled in a decade in the USA, while the number of people seeking psychiatric treatment is falling.

A study quoted in the USA Today article below suggests that doctors with little or no up to date specialist knowledge are increasingly writing scripts for SSRI and other heavily promoted drugs.

http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/2009-08-03-antidepressants_N.htm?csp=34

Any specialist will tell you that even at their best the SSRI and other medications are at best only a bandaid, and far too often lead to suicidal ideation, especially in the first two weeks of use.

Many advocacy groups are now being heard in their pleas for balanced, consumer informed resources to be made available at all doctors rooms, everywhere.

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Perth Mental Health event, Ron Coleman speaks on Recovery, vital info and resurces for service providers – Tuesday 25 August 2009 7pm to 9pm

Posted by tony serve on August 6, 2009

MENTAL HEALTH RECOVERY

From rhetoric to reality

RON COLEMAN

Tuesday 25 August 2009   7pm to 9pm

Lecture Theatre , Ground Floor, Department of Health  189 Royal St, East Perth

Black Swan on the Swan River, Perth Western Au...
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The mental health system in Western Australia is under

review.  Major changes are under consideration in other parts of

Australia including from the commonwealth perspective, or

have already been announced.  What does all of this mean to

consumers, carers and service providers?  Ron Coleman, an

international mental health trainer and consultant from Scotland

who has a lived experience, will talk about developments in

other parts of the world where recovery has become a reality

because systems have changed and continue to change.

This talk will be of interest to social workers, psychiatrists,

psychologists, OTs, nursing staff and others involved in service

delivery.  It will provide hope and inspiration to consumers,

carers and family members that change can occur.  Students of

all disciplines are encouraged to attend to improve their

understanding of emerging perspectives on mental health

recovery.

Ron is a mental health trainer and consultant and is world renowned for

his innovative Recovery based practice, training, and service designs in

psychosis prevention and resolution.

He has an international reputation as a speaker, author and offers a cutting edge

approach to Mental Health service provision.

Ron has spent 13 years in and out of the psychiatric

hospital system in the UK.  As a result of his experiences (ECT,

medication, and compulsory treatment orders) and further research, Ron

has developed his ideas about Recovery and a passion for helping

integrate Recovery concepts into mental health services.  An integral part

of Ron’s approach is that there is great value in forming meaningful

partnerships between the consumer and the mental health professional.

Between 1999 and 2002, Ron was the director of Keepwell Limited and owner operator of Action

Consultancy and Training (ACT).  Then in 1991-1994 Ron was  National Coordinator Hearing

Voices Network and responsible for the development of the Hearing Voices Network in the UK. He

is currently is a director of Working To Recovery Limited.

AASW Members $20.00
Non Members $30.00
Consumers/Carers/Students    $20.00

Registration Information:
Complete the registration and post or fax it to AASW WA.
Registration and payment must be received by Tuesday
August 18th 2009.

For enquires please contact Sophie Mason at AASW WA on

9420 7240 or aaswwa@highway1.com.au.  Alternatively,

contact CPE Project Officer Erin Kerbey at

cpewa@aasw.asn.au.

Parking/Public Transport:
Paid parking is available opposite the building.  Additional
CPP parking is located at Moore St Multi-storey Car Park,
Moore St. Trains run regularly with nearby stops at
Claisebrook or McIver.
Please mail, fax or email your registration to:

Australian Association of Social Workers
City West Lotteries House
2 Delhi Street
WEST PERTH WA 6005
Tel: (08) 9420 7240
Fax: (08) 9486 9766
Email: aaswwa@highway1.com.au

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Out,Black Dog – words from award winning broadcaster/journalist Jody Robb – member Black Dog Whisperer’s Club

Posted by tony serve on July 27, 2009

Out, Black Dog

The black dog never gladly wags his tail

Nor barks his greetings at my gate.

He quietly squeezes beneath the back fence

When it’s dark. . . And lonely . . . And late.

* * * *

The black dog never brings stick nor ball,

Nor rope-bone (all floppy, dog-eared)

But every time he’s finally gone, it seems,

Something has just disappeared.

* * * *

The black dog never yaps, nor yelps,

To give our game away.

Silently keen to fetch my old bones,

He pretends he’s here just to play.

* * * *

The black dog never snarls nor growls,

Nor even bares his teeth;

Until suddenly I’m on the ground:

Pinned and struggling beneath.

* * * *

The black dog never grinds his jaw

To saw at weakened flesh (I expect)

Until his choking, slobbering maw

Has sucked away all hope of breath.

* * * *

The black dog’s snarl may well drip greedily

With the blood of souls bereft.

Myself, I pray never to see nor hear him feed.

I plead the final dregs of any faith left.

* * * *

The hunting black dog‘s haunting howls,

(Heard only by the hunted)

Can stop the bravest hearts and chill bowels.

Its prey hides amid fears unconfronted.

* * * *

Try to stand and face that soul-rattling call!

Know, that, deep within its hellish cavern,

That black dog will, finally (from hunger) fall . . . .

And rot; decayed by its own bitter gall!

* * * *

Remember; far above that feared, deathly, den,

Love lives upon this earth; as does heaven.

So, trust living dogs to always chase things

And willingly bring them back again.

©Jody Robb (2009) All rights reserved.




BLACK DOG RIDE

BLACK DOG RIDESteve Andrews, from Busselton WA, will embark on a solo motorbike trip around Australia on 26th July 2009 to raise community awareness about depression, one of the most common of all mental health problems


Currently, it is estimated that:

  • around one million adults are living with depression each year in Australia.

  • in addition 100,000 young people suffer from depression and the number is growing

  • one in five people people experience depression at some stage of their lives.

The devastating impact of depression has been experienced first hand by Steve, who has lost his mother and two close friends to suicide following long battles with depression.

Many people, including Winston Churchill, have referred to depression as their ‘black dog’ and as such, Steve has named this project the Black Dog Ride http://www.blackdogride.com.au/ .

As he travels around the country on Highway 1, he will combine his passion for motorbikes and a long held dream of riding around Australia with a growing desire to raise awareness about the impact of depression and the resources available to fight it.

steve-002

Steve will also be raising money for the Suicide Call Back Service run by Crisis Support Services. The Suicide Call Back Service http://www.suicidecallbackservice.com.au/ is a free, nationwide telephone service that offers short to medium term support for people at risk of suicide, their carers, and those bereaved by suicide.

How can you help?

1. Take a moment out of your busy life to visit the website www.blackdogride.com.au , learn a little more about the project and raise your own awareness of depression and what we can do to beat it.

2. Make a donation to support the Suicide Call Back Service. Every dollar is appreciated and your support saves lives.

3. Most importantly, do your bit to raise awareness by forwarding this email to your family, friends and associates. Remember, chances are that 1 in 5 of the people in your contacts file will suffer from depression at some time during their life. You are unlikely to know who it will be so please forward this email to your complete address book.

Steve Andrews firmly believes that by being more aware of depression and by talking about it we can break down the stigma attached to mental illness and really make a difference for people suffering from this debilitating condition and for those at risk of suicide.

The ride starts from the Goose Cafe at the Busselton Jetty , 9.30 Sunday morning 26 July. Come on down and wave Steve off on his epic journey.

Thank you.

Black Dog Ride

www.blackdogride.com.au

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“Finding Emmaus” dark historic fantasy by Pamela Glasner – listen to mp3 interview ahead of Oct 1 launch

Posted by tony serve on July 24, 2009

click

“Finding Emmaus”, book one of The Lodestarre series, is a complex, dark historic fantasy about love and loss, obsession and the abuse of power, human frailties and a determination to live a life that matters.

Eight women representing prominent mental diag...
Image via Wikipedia

The psychiatric community has confused Empathic personality traits with mental illness with tragic results, leading two Empaths, living three hundred years apart, on personal journeys to learn the true nature of Empathy.  Transcending time and death to right a centuries-old wrong, they inadvertently uncover a multi-billion dollar conspiracy in which millions of Americans are being misdiagnosed and drugged for no other reason than the enormous income they generate.

Francis Nettleton, 17th century Empath, grew into adulthood believing himself to be insane.  Eminently moral but the product of a society steeped in myths and misconceptions, he makes some less-than-prudent decisions which set in motion a murder for which he cannot forgive himself, a murder which will reverberate through four families and three centuries.

An Antebellum era (pre-civil war) family Bible...
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Three hundred years later, enter Katherine Spencer.  After years of being hospitalized and drugged, she is given a rare opportunity: a second chance at life.  At fifty-four, after being told that, rather than being insane, she’s more than likely Empathic, she sets out to find Francis and the legendary Lodestarre, both 300 years gone, in the hopes she can finally learn to live.

In the process of finding herself and mastering her newly-discovered abilities, Katherine unwittingly becomes the champion for the voiceless millions who are being victimized by a corporate machine of such omnipotent political power that she literally puts her life on the line when she challenges the all-but-unstoppable pharmaceutical industry, America’s most powerful and affluent lobby.

Then, into Katherine’s life comes Sally Cavanaugh, powerful – though novice – Empath with a secret infatuation which eventually transforms into a full-blown obsession.  Overshadowing her ability to discern right from wrong, this obsession just might jeopardize every good thing in her life and everyone else’s – just to get what she wants.

In Wiccan tradition, there is the Book of Shadows; in Christianity, the Bible; even the secular world has its encyclopedias.  But for Empaths, there was nothing of the sort until Francis Nettleton sacrificed everything and made it his life’s mission to create one authoritative body of knowledge, one central set of guiding principles – and he named it The Lodestarre.  This manuscript is nothing less than the lifelong, selfless passion of one man’s profound desire to put an end to the relentless persecution and needless suffering of anyone who did not – or could not – fit the societal mold.

“Finding Emmaus” is an intricate, meticulously-researched, deeply disturbing, suspenseful tale of love and sacrifice, brutality and greed, courage and politics and madness and faith.  It is a story with a huge cast of characters who will keep you guessing what will happen, what they will do and what choices they will make from one minute to the next as they weave in and out of the story and each others’ lives.

Pamela Glasner author "Finding Emaus"

Pamela Glasner author

“The only thing worse than having an incomprehensible, incurable illness is having an incomprehensible, incurable illness in isolation.”

Click here for mp3 audio – Pamela Glasner talking about her new book “Finding Emaus”

Visit Pamela Glasner’s blog ;

http://www.lodestarre.blogspot.com

on twitter, follow @pamelaglasner

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Mental Health sories audio, info & resources from tony serve blogs

Posted by tony serve on July 22, 2009

Mental health news of vital interest to all from that oustanding news service- ABC Radio National

July 15, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

Tireless Perth advocate Lyn Mahboub has shared the audio programme ( and transcript ) below from the ABC that is of great value to ALL mental health“consumers”

{see also http://serve.tony.googlepages.com/LynMahboub.output.mov for a talk we had a few months back about the label of Schizophrenia and the group ” Voices “}

ABC Radio Background Briefing had an interesting program about the DSM etc

http://www.abc.net.au/rn/backgroundbriefing/

Expanding mental illness

Over the decades psychiatrists are finding and re-defining more of the constellation of emotions, reactions, and ups and down of life as mental illness. No surprise, there are pills to make everyone fit the normal template, even some for shyness. Reporter Hagar Cohen. Read Transcript

Publications

Title: Shyness: How Normal Behavior Became a Sickness
Author: Christopher Lane
Publisher: Yale University Press

Title: Selling Sickness
Author: Ray Moynihan and Alan Cassels
Publisher: Allen and Unwin, 2005

Title: They Say You’re Crazy: How The World’s Most Powerful Psychiatrists Decide Who’s Normal
Author: Paula Caplan
Publisher: Perseus Publishing, 1995

tony serve
Skype: perthtones Google Talk: serve.tony@gmail.com
Links to my twitter.pngTwitterwordpress.pngWordPressfriendfeed.pngFriendfeedyoutube.pngYoutubedigg.pngDigg
tony serve blogs Aboriginal women ’silenced’ over uranium mineABC News Article link.

— @ WiseStamp Signature. Get it now

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Mental Health Consumer advocacy group for Western Australia to be more effective because of YOUR involvement

July 14, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

Mental Health Consumer advocacy group for Western Australia to be more effective because of YOUR involvement


please share, DIGG and circulate this info

click here to download the info as a PDF to share     –  CoMHWA Information

CoMHWA Information CoMHWA Information
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Nearly 9 in 10 Aussies stressed out: Lifeline ABC News Article link.

July 13, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

It’s time we spoke up about mental health as  a PRIORITY.

The old idea that depression affects 1 in 5 is CLEARLY under-estimating the epidemic of mental illness.

We in the media are banned from covering  suicides despite the toll being greater than road trauma, and air-time being given to dangerous quacks like “DR Death” Nietschke.

see the ABC item below for a WAKE UP call

Nearly 9 in 10 Aussies stressed out: Lifeline

Monday, July 13, 2009

Almost nine in 10 Australians are stressed and many say work is to blame, according to a national poll commissioned by Lifeline Australia.

The annual survey released today reveals 41 per cent of Australians are experiencing unhealthy levels of stress, and a whopping 87 per cent of the nation is experiencing some degree of stress.

To view on a PC/Mac please use this link

http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2009/07/13/2624400.htm

To view on a mobile please use this link

http://m.abc.net.au/browse?page=11144&articleid=2624400&cat=Justin
from @perthtones’ iPhone

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Fighting Depression on 2 wheels – West Australian man & motorbike prepping for BLACK DOG RIDE – to raise awareness, reduce stigma & suicide

July 13, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

BLACK DOG RIDEBLACK DOG RIDE

Steve Andrews, from Busselton WA, will embark on a solo motorbike trip around Australia on 26th July 2009 to raise community awareness about depression, one of the most common of all mental health problems

Currently, it is estimated that:

  • around one million adults are living with depression each year in Australia.

  • in addition 100,000 young people suffer from depression and the number is growing

  • one in five people people experience depression at some stage of their lives.

The devastating impact of depression has been experienced first hand by Steve, who has lost his mother and two close friends to suicide following long battles with depression.
Many people, including Winston Churchill, have referred to depression as their ‘black dog’ and as such, Steve has named this project the Black Dog Ride http://www.blackdogride.com.au/ .

As he travels around the country on Highway 1, he will combine his passion for motorbikes and a long held dream of riding around Australia with a growing desire to raise awareness about the impact of depression and the resources available to fight it.

steve-002
Steve will also be raising money for the Suicide Call Back Service run by Crisis Support Services. The Suicide Call Back Service http://www.suicidecallbackservice.com.au/ is a free, nationwide telephone service that offers short to medium term support for people at risk of suicide, their carers, and those bereaved by suicide.

How can you help?

1. Take a moment out of your busy life to visit the website www.blackdogride.com.au , learn a little more about the project and raise your own awareness of depression and what we can do to beat it.
2. Make a donation to support the Suicide Call Back Service. Every dollar is appreciated and your support saves lives.
3. Most importantly, do your bit to raise awareness by forwarding this email to your family, friends and associates. Remember, chances are that 1 in 5 of the people in your contacts file will suffer from depression at some time during their life. You are unlikely to know who it will be so please forward this email to your complete address book.

Steve Andrews firmly believes that by being more aware of depression and by talking about it we can break down the stigma attached to mental illness and really make a difference for people suffering from this debilitating condition and for those at risk of suicide.

The ride starts from the Goose Cafe at the Busselton Jetty , 9.30 Sunday morning 26 July. Come on down and wave Steve off on his epic journey.

Thank you.
Black Dog Ride
www.blackdogride.com.au

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PWC Mental Health Survey

July 5, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

The two further workshops are as follows.
CAMHS Consumers and Carers on Monday 20/7/09 Citywest Lotteries House, 2 Delhi St West Perth. 10-12.00
CALD Consumers and Carers Tuesday 21/7/09 Same address. 13.00-15.00

Register at mentalhealthsurvey@au.pwc.com or call 9238 3126.

Cheers
Ken Steele

Major mental health survey in Perth, join us on 6PR.com.au

July 4, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

Mental health advocate Carolyn Fisher will take your questions live as a survey is taken on what to do about the crisis in mental health services in Western Australia.

From  Midnight local time( 1600 UTC/GMT ) join us by calling (8) 92211 882 or tweet/email your number and we’ll call back twitter @perthtones, email serve.tony@gmail.com

click the link below to have your say in the official survey.

HAVE YOUR SAY ON THE FUTURE OF MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES IN WA * DEADLINE * 24 July 2009.

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This weekend on 6pr.com.au overnight July 4,5 2009 noon New York time, midnight in Perth. 6 hrs of live talk

July 3, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

My Twitter is @perthtones follow me for links to amazing folk and infoMy Twitter is @perthtones follow me for links to amazing folk and info

I’m looking forward to the show ( click here to listen and click “listen live” button), with listener Bev coming to help with the phones and Peta                              ( @miss_peetie on twitter ) as our live guest.

Our good friends in Kansas City Amy ( @abeeliever on twitter ) will be listening in and mayjoin in by phone after her epic walk in Chicago last weekend to raise awareness of suicide prevention. ( see Amy’s blog  unavitabella.wordpress.com )

Randy ( @scooprandell ) and Susanne ( @bydezin ) are likely to be listening in from Independence VA and Phoenix Az.

A shoutout too to activist friends like Susanne @susanneure of Amnesty in Canada.

My Twitter is @perthtones follow me for links to amazing folk and info

A special hello too, to friends in the Middle East, more than 70 followers form Iran. My message remains the same, lift the voices of the moderates on all sides and deny oxygen the extremists on all sides. If the peaceful majority stay silent the angry men of all races hold the field.

I’ve had several people here in Perth and in the US contact me recently with loved ones close to the end of their tether because of mentall inllness, poverty and loneliness.

Having been in the state nine years ago, I know there’s no magic pill, no wand to wave and no affirmation strong enough  to make it all better.

here’s some very helpful (free) audio that can help calm and resettle the troubled mind

smile

Relax and destress with Guided imagery meditation – it’s free, it works and it’s fun to make your own

But we CAN SURVIVE, I have, Amy has and you or your loved one can too. Join me here in fututre and on air as we collect tips from people who’ve battled illness on how they got through and how to navigate the health system, bureacracy and legal problems.

My first tip for those in mental ( and often with accompanying physical ) pain is to use breathing and mind calming for panic and re-centring to just get through.

When you get through use at least some of your “well” time to do things that sustain you in terms of social contact, physical exercise, sunshine and decent food.

Relax and destress with Guided imagery meditation – it’s free, it works and it’s fun to make your own

When you do hit speed bumps in future, the seemingly unnecessary meditation or other good things you’ve done will reduce the severity and duration of future illnesses.

There are major challenges for us all in reducing the suicide rate and the suffering from mental illness.

Step 1 support those who are very ill as they just get through the day/night

Step 2 check with peers and support groups for first hand advice on the best help available.

Please join me on air by calling +61 8 92211882 or tweet me at @perthtones with your number so I can call you back.

Please check back here and at mentalmedia.wordpress.com as I and others build resourcress and an advocacy base that is by and for ” mental health consumers”  ( I hate that term – the real consumers are the so-called health service providors who actuall get the tax money )

Tomorrow’s show is important, Mental health advocate Carolyn Fisher will take your questions live as a survey is taken on what to do about the crisis in mental health services in Western Australia.

click the link below before July 7 to have your say.

HAVE YOUR SAY ON THE FUTURE OF MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES IN WA * DEADLINE * 10 July 2009.

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for Amy, Nora and all who’ll be in Chicago this weekend in the Overnight Walk for suicide prevention – see theovernight.org and support these people please

June 26, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

for Amy, Nora and all who’ll be in Chicago this weekend in the Overnight Walk for suicide prevention – see theovernight.org and support these people please.

Gerry & The Pacemakers – You’ll Never Walk Alone

click here for an interview with Amy Kiel on surviving clinical depression and living with chronic pain – Amy is amazing.

Please follow Amy on twitter @abeeliever and fellow walker Nora @noralmt as they walk to remember those who died and reduce the death toll from PREVENTABLE/TREATABLE mental illness.

Amy Kiel    @AbeelieverAmy Kiel @Abeeliever

A major way we can all help is to reduce the deadly stigma surrounding mental illness – you can do that by supporting brave people like Amy who take huge risks to speak up about their experence.

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HAVE YOUR SAY ON THE FUTURE OF MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES IN WA * DEADLINE EXTENDED * 24 July 2009.

June 20, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

LONG DISTANCE DEDICATION
Image by zoompict (i’m back on n off! ) via Flickr

HAVE YOUR SAY ON THE

FUTURE OF MENTAL HEALTH

SERVICES IN WA

Price Waterhouse Cooper is preparing a strategic plan for improving the future delivery of mental health services across the continuum of care, fromprevention and promotion through to acute and recovery services.

This project will provide an agreed overarching policy framework to
guide mental health service reform in Western Australia.

As outlined in the Government’s election commitment, this project
will undertake a comprehensive review of services; develop the State
Mental Health Policy; and develop the State Mental Health Strategic
Plan 2010-2020.

How can we improve mental health services?

Individuals and organisations are invited to provide input into the development of the State Mental Health Strategic Plan 2010-2020 by completing an online submission at www.pwc.com/au/mentalhealthsurvey

The purpose is to find out the priority areas to improve future services for people with mental health problems and promote the mental health of all West Australians.

Are you a mental health consumer or carer?

We would like to find out how well the service meets the needs of
mental health consumers, and their families and carers through an
online survey and a number of consumer and carer workshops.
Please visit www.pwc.com/au/mentalhealthsurvey to complete
the survey.

To register your interest in the consumer and carer workshops, email
your name and contact details to mentalhealthsurvey@au.pwc.com
The online submissions and consumer and carer feedback will be open until 10 July 2009.

More details about the project are at
www.pwc.com/au/mentalhealthsurvey
For any inquiries, please contact
mentalhealthsurvey@au.pwc.com

We look forward to your participation in
this important project.   © Department of Health 2009

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At last some good news on suicide – Mental Health programs save lives.

June 8, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

There is new hope for people in poor mental health as Australia’s suicide rate falls by almost half in ten years. see abc.net.au/lateline story below.

images

The good news is tempered by serious problems in dispensing opiates recently revealed in W.A. and the lingering, deadly stigma of being mentally unwell.

But isn’t it great and encouraging that the death toll is finally falling.

And please check this link for a preview of some amazing stories and useful first hand advice from those who are unwell and hear the voices of their children. https://mentalmedia.wordpress.com/

the very welcome abc item follows…

Reaching out for help as Australian suicides fall

By John Stewart for Lateline

Lateline | abc.net.au/lateline

Posted 3 hours 28 minutes ago
Updated 3 hours 15 minutes ago

A young woman rests her head in her hands in a depressed pose Despair: But Australian youth suicide rates have tumbled in the past decade (ABC News: Giulio Saggin, file photo)

//

During the past decade the suicide rate among young Australians has almost halved.

It is an extraordinary public health achievement, but one which has received little publicity.

Experts say a massive public education campaign and improvement in the treatment of depression are the key reasons for the success.

But with bad economic times upon us, psychologists are warning the suicide rate may begin to rise.

Doug Millen, a 20-year-old university student based in Melbourne, is studying hard and his life is back on track.

But during his final years at high school he suffered from depression and did not know who to turn to.

“I did what young people do and I jumped on the internet and Google for some kind of help,” he said.

He found a website called Reach Out, which had been set up to prevent youth suicide and help young people suffering from depression.

“When I was feeling like I wouldn’t achieve in year 12 and trying to figure out my sexuality, Reach Out was great because it was there when I needed it,” he said.

“It’s completely anonymous and I didn’t have to talk to anyone.”

The online advantage

The Reach Out website now gets 130,000 visits per month from young people.

The website’s managers say being online is a big advantage.

“For a young person who suspects things are not OK, they might not know who to turn to or be afraid to talk to someone about it because they are afraid they will be judged,” project manager Anna McKenzie said.

“So to be able to simply go online, Google something and have a look without anyone needing to know, that’s really invaluable and that’s what a lot of young people are doing at Reachout.”

The Reach Out website was set up 10 years ago when Australia had one of the highest rates of youth suicide in the western world.

But that rate has seen a massive decline in the decade since 1997.

Professor Ian Hickie from Sydney University says suicide rates have fallen internationally, but Australia has benefited from one of the best public health campaigns in recent times.

“In general, a period of strong economic growth and a period of increased awareness around mental health problems and a need to focus on suicide reduction has contributed in most developed countries throughout that time,” he said.

“Additionally in Australia there have been extra efforts in the medical world to treat depression, identify problems and respond appropriately, but also, in Australia, a tremendous community response.”

The Howard government’s tightening of gun laws after the 1996 Port Arthur massacre also contributed to the decline in suicides, especially among young men.

“After the new gun laws were introduced, the rate of gun suicide dropped twice as fast,” Sydney University’s associate professor Philip Alpers said.

“If you reduce the availability of firearms, especially to impulsive young men, then the number of people dying by gunshot reduces.”

But suicide rates in many Aboriginal communities are still high and despite the overall drop in the suicide rate, reports of depression and anxiety are on the rise.

More than 12 million prescriptions for anti-depressants are filled in Australia each year.

“We’ve just had a national survey of mental health in Australia, rates of illness are as high as they ever were,” Professor Hickie said.

“The good thing is that rates of suicide have gone down so we haven’t yet dealt with the underlying problem, but we have got better at dealing with one of the worst outcomes.

“The greater availability of anti-depressants is also believed to have played a role in lowering the suicide rate, but prescribing the drugs to young people is controversial.”

Experts are concerned that if more jobs are lost, the suicide rate may begin to rise.

It is a trend that has already started overseas and workers at Reachout fear that stressful times may be ahead, especially for young Australians trying to find their first job.

For more information, head to the Reach Out website.

Tags: community-and-society, suicide, youth-issues, australia

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iPhone App Glamorizes suicide – App store rates it in TOP 50!

June 4, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

Image representing SuicideGirls as depicted in...
Image via CrunchBase
SuicideGirls -Flip Strip iPhone AppSuicideGirls -Flip Strip iPhone App

iPhone App Glamorizes suicideApp store rates it in TOP 50!

I love my iPhone, can’t wait for 3.o – but Apple Puleeeze will you take a look at the name of this App.

As a mental health advocate and survivor of PTSD I can share with you that troubled young ladies don’t really need to have suicide presented as a glamorous, sexy thing.

I’ll leave the objectification of women for others to object too, and I agree, but for the love of someone’s daughter will you get this horrendously named App out of the App store until the name is changed.

Meanwhile I urge and even plead for everyone to demand more Government funding for real, grassroots, consumer driven suicide prevention work, especially suicide hotlines which here in Perth are so overwhelmed that desperate people are unable to get through. Please donate and support these Lifeline type services, they are likely to be needed by someone you know.

#21 TOP FREE APP SuicideGirls -Flip Strip iPhone App

#21 TOP FREE APP SuicideGirls -Flip Strip iPhone App
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Amy & Tony talking about thriving after surviving major clinical depression

March 26, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

Image representing Skype as depicted in CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBase

Here’s two people talking.

Amy Kiel    @AbeelieverAmy Kiel @Abeeliever

Amy and Tony

22 min 22 sec  download,share,digg us,

we’re you yours !    =D

I’ll post details and links soon, including info on how anyone can record & produce quality interviews with anyone anywhere on things close to their heart.

If anyone has input on providing some visuals, slideshow,etc…we’ll youtube it.

We spoke live, Skype to phone, and the only editing I did was cutting a few seconds where we lost the link and adding a few little things for you.

To life…and the cool fools in the twitterverse =D @perthtones

My Twitter is @perthtones follow me for links to amazing folk and infoMy Twitter is @perthtones follow me for links to amazing folk and info

© 2009 Amy Kiel & Tony Serve    This audio is free to copy and share as long as it’s not for commercial advantage.

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Stigma and shame leads to tragedy for mentally ill people “sane” people need to “get over it” :*)

March 24, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

An important event in Perth W.A. to discuss ways to reduce shame & stigma

shame can kill - help us reduce stigmashame kills – help reduce stigma & visit http://www.comicwa.org/

I interviewed Dr Alun Jones using Skype & Call Recorder on  a MacBook.   ( see above for related local forum info)

You are welcome to listen to, download, or better still, link to the audio below. ( click the blue link and the blue link it goes to )

Dr Alun Jones speaks to Tony Serve on the stigma of Mental Illness          *Recorded March 24 2009 for COMIC.org    23 mins 44 secs

Comments, feedback and guest posts on mental health are very welcome –

{ especially you ” Abeeliever” ;) and all the twitter folk }

Phone or Skype calls are welcome to my auto-recorder which has up to 10 minutes time for your comments, stories, questions.

Skype perthtones or phone +61 8 94672264


Meanwhile…think of the Children

It’s common sense that an ill parent will have an affect on the entire family, but all too often around the world, the children of people being treated are left out in several ways.

There are further complications because it is often the case that genes determining aspects of mental health are shared by some family members

Follow this link to coverage of new research on affected families and suggestions for professionals on more effective, holistic treatments.

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Posted in activism, anxiety, bigotry, brain, brain plasticity, children of mentally ill, church, copmi, culture, depression, disability, discrimination, diversity, mental health, education, equality, grass roots, guided imagery, guided mediation, health legislation, human rights, ignorance, life, lobbyist, make a difference, media, meditation, mental health, networking, panic, people, perth, phone in, psychiatry, psychology, public health, radio, religion, rights, schizophrenia, shame, social justice, social media, social networking, stigma, stress, talkback radio, views, west australia, western australia, wordpress. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . 1 Comment »

Relax and destress with Guided imagery meditation – it’s free, it works and it’s fun to make your own

March 17, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

Iguazu-Falls  © scribeworks.com.au - check out Chris's siteIguazu-Falls © scribeworks.com.au – check out Chris’s site

Guided meditation links here are free. One from the US and one from me.
As my page says – don’t pay for guided meditation audio, there’s plenty of excellent audio free – including good sound FX and binaural beats ( see my page for wiki link with info on binaurals.)

http://serve.tony.googlepages.com/guidedimagery

Here is a great 10 minute guided meditation – you just sit or lie down with earphones on and let your mind go for a walk. This link will open at a University of Michigan’s complementary medicine site for cancer patients which has the 10 min “walk” and other cool stuff that has been scientifically shown to help anyone feel better. Take a walk, go on.

The “shame” of presenting yourself to Mental Health professionals

March 9, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

An important event in Perth W.A. to discuss ways to reduce shame & stigma

shame can kill - help us reduce stigmashame can kill – help us reduce stigma

Meanwhile

It’s common sense that an ill parent will have an affect on the entire family, but all too often around the world, the children of people being treated are left out in several ways.

There are further complications because it is often the case that genes determining aspects of mental health are shared by some family members

Follow this link to coverage of new research on affected families and suggestions for professionals on more effective, holistic treatments.

It’s still not OK for Aussie stars to be gay, even with an Olympic Gold

March 6, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

Sad story but true from news.com.au

check it out below and please comment whether you agree or not.

It’s still not OK for Aussie stars to be gay | Celebrity | News.com.au.

Crazy poll on drug abuse – do drugs make you crazy or do you have to be crazy to use them

February 3, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

Does substance abuse cause mental illness, or do the ill simply reach for anything to feel better? Click here to vote   ( note –  tongue firmly in cheek on this poll )

The UK has upgraded it’s rating for Cannabis so it’s classed as a jailable offence to have it, despite top medical advisors warning against the move see here for BBC story ( yeah good one Britain  – who needs dope when you can kill yourself a lot quicker with cigarettes, booze and prescribed anti-depressant meds )

A few highly publicised bits of “research” in recent years have us believing that cannabis will make you schizophrenic and increase chances of paranoia, anxiety and depression. They are dangerous part-truths.

For men, about 1 in 5,000 develop psychoses according to another recent BBC report, but the greater reality is that people with mental illness will reach for any substance, legal or illegal, to ease their pain.  We advocates deal daily with hurting folk who self-medicate.

What is REALLY crazy is that research also shows that adolescents smoking tobacco raise their risk of depression later in life, but ciggies are legal across the planet.

Meanwhile an important related issue is the deadly stigma attached to mental illness –

I addressed a meeting recently and suggested that

” no-one in their right mind abuses drugs “

Imagine my surprise when a voice was raised in indignation along these lines;

” hey wait a minnit, I have friends who are junkies – how dare you say they are mentally ill.”

It’s enough to drive you nuts!

Meanwhile click here for a radio interview with a key australian advocate on “schizophrenia” as understanding grows that hearing voices and other psychotic episodes are not schizoid.

For help for those hearing voices and for info on debunking “schizophrenia” go to http://www.intervoiceonline.org/

Finally I never advocate illegal drug use, whether you’re sane or silly. ( I also don’t advise you to use anti-depressants, dexamphetamines,ritalin, SSRI’s, Alcohol or tobacco.)


Brain Training, Plasticity and You – how have you changed your life by changing the way your brain works

January 9, 2009 — tony serve | Edit

In the last 8 years I’ve recovered from PTSD ( Clinical Depression and Anxiety ) to the stage where my health is actually better than before I became ill.

we CAN change the way we think

The three main areas that have kept me alive and then allowed me to thrive again are based on Brain Plasticity, the ability to “rewire” your own  brain. ( see the website for Norman Doidge’s inspiring book on the subject in the right sidebar of this blog )

Prescribed drugs may help some, but without proper diagnosis using fMRI it’s guesswork, and my Doctor guessed wrong – the SSRI’s made me suicidal.

The therapies/treatments that have allowed me to build new ways of thinking are neurofeedback, cognitive behaviour therapy and meditation/hypnotherapy.( see my guided imagery page – also in the right sidebar )

Since going public with my illness 8 years ago and on  talkback radio here in Perth recently I have been swamped by people struggling with depression, panic and many other challenges. Almost without exception they have received little help and only grief from the “system” of health professionals who often just hand out potentially deadly pills, even giving SSRI’s to infants!  Just last week a mate who was close to the end of his tether was told by his family doctor to “get over it” – I wonder if someone with a broken leg is told to “run away”

When I return to fill in at 6PR there are always calls from my fellow travellers battling the “black dog” and the common theme is that very few doctors, hospitals or health systems have any idea what to do in the short medium, or long term.

Anyway it’s become clear that the most reliable and effective help available comes through fellow sufferers or their devoted families and carers.

So let’s do something about that.

I am keen to work with anyone who has stories and info on recovery and resilience. I will post text audio and video here and you can make a big difference if you are able to pass on details of your journey and links to any useful sources of help or inspiration.

Clinical work on brain plasticity ( the ability to forge new neuronal pathways in the brain ) by amazing people all over the world has provided us with the means to share effective treatments for illnesses and genetic disorders such as;

depression, panic, anxiety, schizophrenia, epilepsy, autism, tourettes, closed head injury, head trauma, genetically related disability, stroke, paralysis, alzheimers, dementure, addiction, OCD, bipolar, bulemia, anorexia, fibromyalgia, body dysmorphia and more.

So please join in and contribute, especially if your story or info can help sufferers and reduce the deadly stigma that comes with brain related illness.

Please comment by clicking the button below, and you’re welcome to submit text pics, audio or video.

You’re welcome to send comments or materials by email to serve.tony@gmail.com

You can also call and leave your spoken thoughts or info on my recording service +61 8  9467 2264 – you have several minutes to speak and I’ll post the audio here for you.

Anyone can contribute, so don’t feel your input isn’t valuable because you’re ill or feel small inside, we need to hear from you and welcome questions or solutions equally.

I hope to hear from you soon… and you’re welcome to join me on my last 4 nights at 6PR midnight to dawn – that’s 882 6PR in Perth, globally at 6pr.com.au

local time is daylight saving and it’s midnight to 0600 sat & sun, then midnight til 0500 mon & tue.

Perth time is GMT/UTC PLUS 9 hours

Early Sunday morning I’ll have 2 teenage guests in the studio who have worked out effective ways to overcome eating disorders and depression. Join me, Travis and Alicia and about 30 thousand listeners and see if we can make a difference.

Research shows Parents who can’t deal with Gay children create tragedies – so GET OVER IT!

December 30, 2008 — tony serve | Edit

New research outlined in the Scientific American shows that young gays are being driven to despair and even suicide by unaccepting parents.

This is not rocket science, if you didn’t accept your child had red hair  – you would cause problems for them because they HAVE red hair whether you choose to see it or not.

Meanwhile, colouring the hair and pretending it isn’t red doesn’t stop the person being a redhead. So please stop trying to convert or reprogramme people with a gender difference just because you can’t understand a reality more complex than dogma.

In a way it’s a mental health issue because it’s clear that people who don’t accept homosexuality are in denial of the provable facts or simply ignorant.

Click here for more on the research from Scientific American, and please share the story with anyone you know who is still blind to the realities of gender difference.

John Lennon asks us to join One Laptop Per Child – well sorta, and it’s OK with Yoko ONO

December 28, 2008 — tony serve | Edit

The One Laptop Per Child group has produced a new ad  ( click here to view it on Youtube ) featuring a remixed voice and video package that at least gives the feeling that the Beatle was supporting it.

It’s not exactly slick, but if it continues to focus on the needs of children it’s okay with me too Yoko.

By the way, here in Australia John Lennon’s “Double Fantasy” Album was number one on this day back in 1980, the year I started as a radio journalist.

Click here for the website of One Laptop, and see the mission statement below.

To create educational opportunities for the world’s poorest children by providing each child with a rugged, low-cost, low-power, connected laptop with content and software designed for collaborative, joyful, self-empowered learning. When children have access to this type of tool they get engaged in their own education. They learn, share, create, and collaborate. They become connected to each other, to the world and to a brighter future.

We all know that the biggest challenges for children in our world are war, disease, famine, drought and neglect.

We desperately need energy money and resources there, but this campaign looks worthwhile for some fairly obvious reasons.

Please let me know if you support or see other advocacy and advocate stuff that might be worth republishing here.

BlogBack talkback to this blog – you are most welcome to;

email submissions   serve.tony@gmail.com ,

post new material in comments,

share websites or media,

leave a voice comment  – phone +61 8 9467 2264

contribute in any way.

I’m particularly keen to hear from people who are working in area of mental health with stories or help finding useful treatments based on brain plasticity.

Everything from meditation to; neurofeedback, analysis, CBT and guided imagery works on “rewiring” the neuron circuits of the brain after damage, disease or deterioration.

Exciting and hopeful clinical work being done in many areas, such as stroke and HI recovery and many  ”disabilities” are turning out to be treatable conditions.

It’s been exciting to see mainstream media at least begin to pick up on the great work being done, and the ongoing success of Norman Doidge’s book ( and PBS special ) has been an important starting point or focus for those unaware of the new treatments that continue to evolve.

That  ”brain training” software and games we see being advertised are just a small part of the real and repeatable effects of “rewiring” the brain.  They are becoming more and more widely used as theraputic devices in private homes, business, hospitals and nursing homes.

The possibilities, even in the short term, for better treatment and some cures are inspiring, but there will soon be debate about some key elements of life and law.

It’s become clear that all crime and substance abuse are related to mental health.

It is self evident that no-one in their right mind kills, rapes, tortures or neglects. No-one in their right mind uses substances that make them ill, violent, impulsive or an addict.

It stands to reason that Governments as providors of health care could ( and I say should) be held accountable for not

providing mental health care when someone comes to grief.

Maybe that will be a good thing in the this risk averse corporate world.

Perhaps if lawyers and activisits around the world began a concerted series of claims for individuals and groups based on their known mental health issues not being addressed we may see less seriosuly ill people released from jail or hospitals and into a new tragedy.

Once again it comes down to whether we care enough about our safety, health and the future to spend money and energy on better diagnosis and treatment for brain related illnesses.

We have the knowledge, but the will is yet to come and there are  also the hurdles of  stigma and cost. Change will come though, we’re evolving.

Anyhow, I’m just a madman with a will to make a difference, it’s what YOU think and do that will make a difference.

Ben Cousins’ Dad on radio 6WF – great work as usual by our ABC

December 17, 2008 — tony serve | Edit

If you’d like to hear Ben Cousins’ dad Bryan talking to abc local radio’s Russel Wolfe click here.

The interview reveals a great deal about a parent’s battle to support a child through almost unprecedented levels of pressure and scrutiny.

Please pass the link on to others, particularly those standing on soapboxes or flinging rocks from glazed domiciles, and to those whose mouths seem unconnected to any human brain let alone their own.

Congratulations to Ben and family, Kevin Sheedy, the mighty Tigers and kudos to Perth’s abc radio.

visit Richmond’s website here, and don’t be shy about joining the club or at least sending a message of support.

oh, one last thing… watch out for vultures! There are media people already drafting stories about Ben’s future failure – certain that it will come and that they will profit from his failure.

The best way to dreal with these flying vermin is to ignore them – so choose your media wisely

Ben Cousins saved by Tigers after abuse by Weasels

December 16, 2008 — tony serve | Edit

Ben Cousins has been selected to play for the Richmond AFL club.

Story and Video here from my colleagues at WA Today ( Fairfax Digital/Radio )

I’m not a joiner, but I will become a member at the Victorian club to show both; support for their bold action, and  send a message to the Eagles and AFL that they should not expect a Christmas card.

Listen in to sports tonight on local radio 6PR from 1700hrs local

( 1000 UTC/Greenwich ) to hear the full story.

click here for the link and then click on “listen live.”

Remember, Ben has been battling an illness, has not been convicted of anything and yet has been villified and isolated by big sections of the Media, AFL and various Club administrators.

I trust these big tough aussie men who run these shows will abandon their own children if they get hooked on drugs and make sure they can’t continue their careers. They may also realise their institutionalised booze drinking is a drug addiction and sack themselves.

Many of them will be waiting for Ben to fail so they can crack a tinnie and say ” told you so!”

What has Ben Cousins got to do with Social Justice?

November 19, 2008 — tony serve | Edit

Here in Australia there are many serious Social Justice issues, especially for Indigenous people and migrants, but what has one of our “fallen” heroes got to do with SJ?

It’s about mental health – here we have a young man who’s acknowledged having an addictive personality and having used illegal substances – and he’s been widely villified by booze swilling, pill popping people in “authority” and the commentariat.

Yesterday he had draconian drug testing requirments put on him to allow his return to australia’s most popular sport and has been shamefully rejected by his old club.

The guts of it is this – drug abuse ( including the big killers, alcohol & nicotene ) is a mental health problem and Ben has worked harder to recover his “sobriety”  than he ever did while captaining his team, winning a grand final or the game’s highest honour.

To treat him like a criminal, when no conviction has ever been recorded and when he’s had the courage to disclose his illness, is simply unjust. That’s especially true in a sport where alcohol sponsorship and a culture of booze and womanizing remain endemic.

How about breathlyizing and drug testing the administators and club officials who’ve put this extra and disproportionate weight on this young man’s shoulders, basically to cover their own butts in the face of pressure from a media that’s also riven with boozers, misogynists and drug takers.

Now, Ben’s a big boy and can speak for himself, but my concern is this, if Ben can be treated like this, how can an “ordinary” person hope for social justice if they have mental health/susbstance issues.

Who is going to disclose a problem and seek much needed help when it’s clear that doing so is likely to cost them their job and the esteem of their community.

So if you care about social justice – spread the word that substance abuse is a mental health issue – NO ONE IN THEIR RIGHT MIND jeapordises their life and career by abusing substances, legal or illegal

If we can’t give genuine heroes like Ben the much vaunted australian “fair go” –  what hope is there for the rest of us.

( by the way, in the “war” on drugs, how many drugs have we killed?  It’s a %^$*ing health problem, not a criminal issue )

Our society is like a bad doctor, we bury our mistakes.

abc radio story on the abilities of “disabled” people

November 7, 2008 — tony serve | Edit

Thanks to all the 6PR listeners ( 6pr.com.au ) who’ve visited after sharing the night with me – you are an awesome group of people.

Those advocating for people with a disability may be interested in a great piece from the abc’s “the world today” programme today http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2008/s2413311.htm

It echoes the amazing work done by Perth’s own Ethnic Disability Advocacy Centre (EDAC)

in providing training and opportuinities to make short films ( some of which have garnered awards! )

see http://www.edac.org.au/vicinityfc.html

Also, I was lucky enough to work with EDAC Systemic Advocate ( and friend) Zeliha Iscel, who has just taken up a new post with the National Advocacy group, on a programme to teach radio presentation skills to disabled people from an Culturally or Ethnically Diverse background.

see http://www.edac.org.au/pdf/Empowerment08.pdf

By the way, having dealt with PTSD/Depression these p[ast 8 years and being the son of a refugee, I am actually in the same cohort as those I’ve been teaching and advocating for – if not me then who?

And let’s remember that mental health issues are part of the disability spectrum, so that includes the many new australians left traumatised by their life experience before coming downunder, and they need our help.

Please  feel free to leave a comment or share stories info and contacts to aid the growing advocacy push for some of the most disadvantaged people in our community.

I welcome all input and links/subscriptions and look forward to making a difference in the post-Bush era.

cheers

tony

Computer That Reacts To Thought A Lifeline For Brain Injured

November 6, 2008 — tony serve | Edit

ScienceDaily (2008-11-06) — People who have suffered traumatic brain injuries and who are unable to speak or move are being given the first chance to communicate using just the power of thought — and a laptop loaded with sophisticated algorithms.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081105191855.htm#

Please share this with any and all advocacy groups and philanthropists you know, a little money for this project would go a long way to giving some dear people a better chance at fulfilling their potential.

By the way, local clinical work/research here in Perth by Dr Neil Beck suggests Neurofeedback techniques can play a major role in recovery for people with head injuries.

It works with the brain’s natural  “plasticity” to develop new neural pathways.

I’ve also found Neurofeedback helpful for PTSD and Panic – a lot more efficacious than those damned SSRI’s

btw… I’ve often been called a “bleeding heart”   – well, if a heart’s not bleeding, it’s dead, and that’s OFFAL!!!

Reuters reports on Immigrants’ Mental Health by Michael Kahn

November 4, 2008 — tony serve | Edit

This research backs common sense and may be of use for those advocating for people from Culturallyand Linguistically Diverse backgrounds.

Please note there is a growing understanding/acceptance that mental health issues are part of the overall category of “disability” yet many advocacy groups ( edac.org.au excepted ) still shy away from mental health as a human condition worthy of advocacy or interest.

The stigma of mental health problems remains overwhelming – more on this and comments welcome in future posts.

here’s the reuters piece…

By Michael Kahn

LONDON (Reuters) – Immigrants to Britain are more likely to suffer serious mental health problems than the native population, but strong family and community ties may help to protect them, researchers said on Monday.

Previous studies have shown a higher risk of psychoses such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder among immigrants facing discrimination and alienation, but the new findings pointed to surprising variations among different ethnic communities.

Social factors rather than genetics may explain the differences, said Jeremy Coid, a researcher at St. Bartholomew’s Hospital in London who led the study published in the Archives of General Psychiatry .

“Maybe instead of thinking about risk we need to think about what is protective,” Coid said in a telephone interview. “There may be some kind of protection from living in a close community.”

Coid and his colleagues studied 484 immigrants aged 18 to 64 living in three inner-city neighbourhoods of East London, an area that has historically been a first stop for new arrivals. All developed a mental disorder between 1996 and 2000.

The ethnic subgroups included white from countries including Ireland and continental Europe, black Caribbean, black African, Asian from the Indian subcontinent, and all other groups including Chinese, other Asians and those of mixed ethnicity.

The researchers found an overall elevated risk for immigrants and more specifically that some groups seemed less affected by the hardships new arrivals often face.

Immigrants from the Indian sub-continent were only 1.3 times more likely to develop psychosis compared to the native population, suggesting that community ties and family bonds may offer protection against discrimination based on things like skin colour, the researchers said.

White immigrants to Britain were two times more likely to develop psychosis, while black Caribbean new arrivals were four times more likely to suffer in this way.

(Reporting by Michael Kahn; Editing by Maggie Fox and Keith Weir)

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

Lyrics to new song – “Black Dog Blues” Hound from Hell – audio to follow in a few days

Posted by tony serve on July 22, 2009

black dog black dog
you’re back in my head
just telling me lies
say I’m better off dead

i know yer lyin
but i can’t shake free
black dog black dog
get away from me

they say the dog
it gets to us all
and some poor souls
jus’ can’t stop the fall

you’re makin’ me moan
you mongrel beast
just leave me alone
i’m not your feast

black dog black dog
you get around back
I ain’t givin in
ain’t givin you jack

when you hear that howl
you’ll know it so well
just send that demon
right back down to hell

©tonyserve2009

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »