One in four people will have a mental health problem during the course of any given year.
This could be very minor and not have a significant impact on the person or their family’s lives, however there are occasions when the situation can become more serious and have significant consequences.
Who to contact
If you feel that you (or someone you care for) requires assistance with mental health issues, your first point of contact should be your doctor.
Assessment of need
Your doctor or another health professional may refer you on to a mental health Social Work team who will undertake an assessment of need with you. Once the assessment is completed, you and your care manager will complete a care plan identifying how your assessed needs can be met.
Services can include support in your home or respite care.
Alternatively you may decide to receive payment through self-directed support services (direct payments) which would mean receiving money from the Council to enable you to buy support services. There may be a charge for the services you receive but this will be discussed with you by the care manager.
If you are a carer then you are entitled to have a carer’s assessment which looks at your needs and what support you might require in order to continue providing care.
You or someone you care for may wish to seek the support of an independent advocate to help you express your opinions or wishes.
Mental health officer services
At times, treatment for mental illness may be required to be authorised by legislation due to the severity of the symptoms or the level of risk involved in not receiving treatment.
For this to happen, a Mental Health Officer will be required to become involved to ensure that this intervention is carried out appropriately and that your rights are observed and supported.
For further information please contact your local Social Work office.