Bristol University students protest the ‘growing mental health crisis’
November 30, 2018
By: Jenna Rachid
Students from the University of Bristol have held a demonstration calling for better mental health support for students, the BBC reports.
11 students took their own lives over the last 18 months at the university, and many are now calling for the university to take action.
One of the march’s organisers, Ruth Day, said the protest was orchestrated by multiple university societies as they felt that services were ‘inaccessible’ and ‘badly overstretched.’
BBC research suggests that the number of students in the UK seeking mental health support whilst studying had increased by 50% in the last 5 years.
Day told the BBC: ‘When you get to access them they are fantastic but there are so many people with problems and they are having to wait as long as five weeks to be seen – these people may not be suicidal at the start but they are at risk.’
‘We had a really productive meeting with the university last week but we felt the need to take action as their recent consultation promised very little that was proactive or new,’ she added.
Thousands of teenagers in Britain are turning to apps to help with anxiety, self-harm and depression.
According to The Guardian, young people are seeking out ‘fast, personal care and advice’ via their phone, instead of waiting up to 12 months for NHS professional treatment.
The increased use of apps was revealed on the same day as NHS Digital’s prevalence study was released, showing that 17% of 17-19 year olds were assessed to have a mental health issue.
Claire Murdoch, NHS England’s national mental health director, says: ‘Technology is constantly evolving and young people are usually at the forefront, so it’s no surprise increasing numbers are turning to services like these which can certainly play a part, particularly when backed up by face-to-face support.’
Experts support the latest app trend, however, warn that online support should complement, not replace, face-to-face professional support.
In case you missed it…
Every four minutes the police receive a call regarding concerns over mental health – The police have become the ‘default’ service to deal with people struggling with their mental health, the BBC reports.
Mental illness costs the UK £94bn a year– A report by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has found the mental health problems are costing the UK billions in treatment, social support, and unemployment.