Summary of report content
This report presents the results of engagement activities carried out by Healthwatch Norfolk in support of Norfolk and Suffolk Foundation Trust’s ‘Annual Engagement Exercise’ 2021. Engagement was carried out in January to March 2021.
The project aimed to gather feedback from socially marginalised groups who may be more at risk of mental health difficulties to explore how they thought mental health services could better support people to live their dreams, hopes and ambitions.
Healthwatch Norfolk held six online focus groups and ran a survey alongside the sessions. Three additional sessions were held with refugees and asylum seekers as part of a secondary project. Eight key themes emerged from the research.
- Information about services should be shared in many different places and formats, to raise awareness in different groups.
- Mental health stigma is an important factor in why people may not use mental health services.
- People have negative experiences of mental health services and lack confidence in them.
- Access to services is easier if there are fewer bureaucratic stages to go through.
- Having a range of different therapies, support etc available is important, to suit different needs and desires.
- Peer support from friends and family is crucial to good mental wellbeing.
- Staff in mental health services need to be appropriately trained in understanding the needs and experiences of marginalised groups.
- Continuity of care requires addressing.