Forum in Canterbury to discuss addictions and mental illness

Press Release – Awareness

With the Ministry of Health beginning to focus on the needs of the significant proportion of people who experience addiction issues alongside mental illness, regional DHBs have been required to reflect on how their services meet these needs and make plans …Forum will discuss how services can meet the needs of those experiencing addictions and mental illness

With the Ministry of Health beginning to focus on the needs of the significant proportion of people who experience addiction issues alongside mental illness, regional DHBs have been required to reflect on how their services meet these needs and make plans for improvement.

Mental illness and addictions which occur together for people, referred to as Co-Existing Problems (CEP) in Ministry and DHB documents, are currently largely treated as separate health concerns, creating a situation where service users can find it difficult to have their needs met in a holistic way.

Plans such as the ‘Draft Canterbury Plan for Co-Existing Mental Health and Addictions Problems’ aim to outline how integrated services can be supportive of people with mental health and addictions diagnoses.

In response to this plan, Awareness, Canterbury’s mental health and addictions service user network, will be holding a forum for consumers to share their views on what helpful CEP services could look like, and for service providers to begin discussing how the NGO community sector can make use of CEP resources.

The need for community and peer support services aimed at meeting the needs of people with both mental health and addictions challenges is great. In holding this forum, Awareness hopes to support the process of developing services with consumer views taken into account.

Speakers confirmed for the forum include:
• Fraser Todd, Senior Lecturer at the National Addictions Centre
• Sandy McLean, Planning and Funding, CDHB, involved in developing the CEP plan
• Beth Nobes, Service Delivery Manager, Consumer Advocacy Services at MHAPS
• Angel Tanerau-Love, CEP peer advocate at MHAPS (Mental Health Advocacy and Peer Support)
• Marc Beecroft – Regional Alcohol and other Drugs consumer advisor on the Ministry of Health CEP steering group

The Awareness CEP forum will be held on Tuesday 27th March, 12.45-2.30pm at the Mental Health Education and Resource Centre (MHERC), 403a Worcester Street, Christchurch. Entry is free and open to all interested, including people who have used mental health or addictions services, service staff and mental health or addictions service managers.

ENDS

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