Hear Us Open Forum meeting – 1st April 2014 – “The April Big Benefits Meeting”

Matthew Mckenzie attended this very informative meeting.

He has done great audio and video blogs as well as taking some photos.

There were presentations from Active Minds and Employment Support — a new service. Kam Patel: Personal Independence Payment — replacing DLA (Disability Living Allowance). Croydon Discretionary Scheme (CDS), Replacing social funding e.g. crisis loans and Access to Work with Special Guest Mary Dunleavy, Q and A session on PIP.

The audio and video blogs contain a huge amount of information on benefits, access to work, PIP payments and more!  They are well worth a watch or a listen.

You can find Matthew’s video blog here:

His audio blog here: 

and his photos here:  https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.704740086235427.1073741886.476820022360769&type=3

Thank you Matthew – great work!

SLaM event promotion

Maudsley Charity showcase event

On Tuesday 13 May 2014, Maudsley Charity is inviting the public and SLaM staff to learn more about how it benefits service users and the community.

The showcase event, which is being held at the ORTUS Centre between 6pm-8pm, coincides with Mental Health Awareness Week, which runs from 12 – 18 May.

There will be opportunity to learn about the wide range of projects that the charity supports, including:

  • Hearing Things – a drama-based programme which explores mental health care experiences using theatre techniques. The project aims to build rapport with service users and help educate the public on mental health.
  • Anxiety Arts Festival 2014 – a sneak peek at the new London-wide arts festival organised by the Mental Health Foundation. The festival will explore the causes and effects of anxiety and will bring leading and emerging artists, musicians and performers together for a dynamic programme of events.
  • Mind and Soul Choir -a community choir which aims to break down barriers associated with mental health and improve wellbeing through singing. The choir was formed in Lambeth in 2006 and their director, Lea Cornthwaite, is also Musical Director for The Royal Opera House Youth Company.

It is entirely free to attend and promises to be an informative and enjoyable evening.

For more information, please click here.

And to book your place, contact slaminfo@togetherwecan.org.uk or 020 7848 7915.

Mon 21 April at The Dragon Cafe

Stuff & Nonsense 3 – Celebrating our Senses and Shakespeare!

This Bank Holiday we will be open as usual and our monthly creative theme of Stuff & Nonsense continues. On Monday we will be trying to make sense (or perhaps nonsense) of our senses and celebrating the famous playwright’s 450th anniversary. Treat your hands, eyes and mind with Nail-Works at 2 pm, Optical Poetry at 5 pm, and Sensing Our Senses talk by Neuropsychology researchers at 7 pm. There will also be music for your ears and a tasty fresh menu from the kitchen to enjoy too!

DC Programme- Monday 21 April 2014

Historical Perspectives on ‘antisocial personality disorder’ and ‘moral insanity’

This conference is a collaboration between an ESRC funded project called ‘Cross disciplinary Perspectives on ‘Anti-social personality disorder’ and the: Centre for the History of the Emotions

When: Monday May 12th: 9-30 -> 5.00pm

Where: Queen Mary University of London

There is a fee  of £15 waged/ £0 unwaged;  places are limited so booking is essential.

Booking:  http://historyaspd.eventbrite.co.uk

Historical Perspectives on ‘anti-social personality disorder’ and ‘moral insanity’

This conference aims to explore the history of the highly contested diagnosis of ‘antisocial Personality disorder’.  This label has been used to describe individuals who have major problems with their lives and relationships with others. At their most extreme these difficulties can involve criminal offending, violence and other perverse and harmful behaviours. It is possible to trace histories of similar diagnoses (such as ‘moral insanity’, ‘feebleminded’ and ‘psychopathy’) over 200 hundred years. Despite descriptive similarities there have also been very marked differences in the way that the diagnoses have been conceived and treated.

The conference features speakers from Europe and North America. The key note is by Professor Nicole Rafter who has written extensively on the history of criminological research.

Other speakers:

Felix Schirmann (University of Groningen, Netherlands)

Emilia Musemeci (University of Catania, Italy)

Bolette Larsen (Lund University, Sweden)

Katariina Parhi (University of Oulu, Finland)

David W Jones (University of East London, UK)

This is the first event of a three year ESRC sponsored series: Cross Disciplinary Thinking about ‘Antisocial Personality Disorder’.

For more information about the series, contact Dr David W Jones (d.jones@uel.ac.uk)

Via Hanne

Antidepressant citalopram heart safety warning

“Safety warning over Britain’s most common antidepressant,” The Daily Telegraph reports. “Doctors have been told to lower the maximum dose” for all patients, the Telegraph continues.

The news is based on drug safety advice issued in October last year by the UK’s drug regulator about the antidepressant drugs citalopram (Cipramil) and escitalopram (Cipralex). The revised advice for doctors followed findings from a study that found both drugs were associated with abnormalities known to increase risks to the heart. Importantly, it found that the risk increased at higher doses. This news was ignored at the time but has surfaced today with the Telegraph reporting criticism of the drug regulator for “failing to make a public announcement”.

People who have been prescribed citalopram and escitalopram should not be alarmed into stopping taking their medication. If you are concerned about the dosage of your depression medication you should discuss it with your GP.

What is citalopram and what is it used for?

Citalopram is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), a type of antidepressant drug commonly used to treat people with major depressive disorder, anxiety and obsessive compulsive disorder. It is more commonly known by its brand name in the UK, Cipramil, and is manufactured by the pharmaceutical company Lundbeck.

A variation of citalopram (escitalopram – brand name Cipralex), also made by Lundbeck, was included in the drug safety update. It is used to treat major depressive episodes, panic disorder with or without agoraphobia, anxiety disorders and obsessive compulsive disorder.

What is the safety advice?

The safety advice for citalopram and escitalopram was issued to healthcare professionals by the UK’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). Included in the safety warning were updated recommendations about new maximum daily dose restrictions, as well as warnings and contraindications (which indicate when it is not advisable to prescribe the drug).

The advice followed a study carried out by the l. The randomised controlled trial (RCT)found that citalopram and escitalopram were associated with increased electrical abnormalities of the heart (known as QT interval prolongation) and that these abnormalities increased with increasing doses (known as dose-dependency).

In the RCT, electrocardiogram measurements showed that when a 60mg dose of citalopram was given, it took twice as long for the heart to recover as when a 20mg dose was given. For a 60mg dose it took the heart 16.7 milliseconds to recover (90%confidence interval 15.0 to 18.4) and for a 20mg dose it took the heart 7.5 milliseconds to recover (90% confidence interval 5.9 to 9.1).

Importantly, the risks of both drugs on QT interval prolongation have been known for some time and have been included in the product information of both drugs. These study findings further defined this risk and have clarified that the drug’s effects on QT interval are dose-dependent. The safety update clarifies this dose-dependent effect to ensure that doctors, who should already be aware of the risk, can prescribe safely and appropriately.

The new recommended daily doses for citalopram are:

  • 40mg daily for adults (previously 60mg)
  • 20mg daily for patients older than 65 years (previously 40mg)
  • 20mg daily for those with poor liver function (previously 30mg)

For escitalopram, the maximum daily dose for patients older than 65 years is now 10mg. Other recommended doses remain unchanged. Further studies have not shown an added benefit at doses higher than 40mg.

The MHRA also recommends that citalopram and escitalopram should not be used in patients with known QT interval prolongation or in combination with other medicines known to prolong the QT interval. For example, prolonged QT interval is also a symptom of “long QT syndrome”, which is a type of heart arrhythmia. This was one of the several possible causes of thecollapse and heart attack in March of the Premier League footballer Fabrice Muamba.

The MHRA advises doctors to exercise caution when prescribing citalopram to patients who have a high risk of developing a condition known as Torsade de Pointes (a kind of heart rhythm problem). Those at risk include people who are known to have:

  • congestive heart failure
  • previous myocardial infarction (heart attack)
  • bradyarrhythmias (slow heartbeat)
  • predisposition to hypokalaemia (low potassium levels in the blood) or hypomagnesaemia (low magnesium levels in the blood) because of other illness or medicines

When was the new advice issued?

The safety update was issued by letter to healthcare professionals by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) on October 24 2011. The product information of each drug was also updated.

Why is it a problem now?

According to the Telegraph, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) came under fire “last night” (June 29 2012) when “experts criticised the MHRA for failing to make a public announcement – as it has done over other alerts such as the PIP breast implant scandal”. This is because, at the time of the safety update, only health professionals were notified, the Telegraph claims. It is not clear which experts the Telegraph is referring to. The newspaper’s story includes a quote from a consultant cardiologist saying that GPs should not stop prescribing the drugs. However, the Telegraph’s story includes a quote from a spokesman from a patient safety charity – Action against Medical Accidents – critical of the apparent failure by regulators to alert the public. The spokesman said that, “it is particularly disappointing that there has been so little transparency with patients and the public about this”.

Beyond these new quotations, it is difficult to see why the Telegraph has reported this as news today. The updates were available on the MHRA website in December 2011.

People receiving citalopram and escitalopram should not be alarmed and should not stop taking their medication. Anyone concerned about the dosage of their depression medication should discuss it with their GP.

Via http://www.nhs.uk/news/2012/07July/Pages/antidepressant-citalopram-qt-heart-rhythm-safety-warning.aspx

Lambeth and Southwark Wellbeing Network(LSWBN) event

Lambeth and Southwark Wellbeing Network(LSWBN) event


Plus the Lambeth and Southwark wellbeing E-news is out - http://lambethwellbeing.wordpress.com/



Mind in Croydon Positive Steps

Positive Steps – A 15km Charity Walk

Lloyd Park, Croydon

24th May 2014

Positive Steps is back on this year and we are expecting it to be bigger and better than last year!

You can see all the photos from last year on our Facebook page.

We had a brilliant pilot event in 2013, everyone involved had fun and we raised a bit of cash too. So the date is in the diary, the park is booked and we are keen to get your registrations in early.

Last year, the amazing Ronnie Corbett came to open the event. We are yet to confirm who will be opening the 2014 event and we will release this information as soon as we can!



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