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'Dignity' was the theme for this year's World Mental Health Day. The department launched a Twitter campaign to support dignity in mental health in the week running up to the day on Saturday 10 October.

In a series of postcards, some of the department's leading PI's expressed what dignity meant to them, with particular relevance to their fields.

Using the hashtags #dignity and #WMHD2015 the statements were Retweeted and favoured hundreds of times, and helped to spread positive messages for a day which acknowledges the on-going need for greater understanding and treatment of mental health issues.

The text for the full series of postcards is  quoted below:

#1 'When parents or children have mental health problems, it is key to support and positively empower parents to enable their children to achieve their potential'

Alan Stein, Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, University of Oxford

#2 'Stigma about mental health is a major factor in suicide and self-harm. Treating people who face such issues with dignity can only be a positive step in preventing people from trying to end their lives.'

Professor Keith Hawton, Director, Oxford University Centre for Suicide Research


Dignity in mental health means thinking about people as individuals, and recognising that difficulties and challenges can affect any one of us.- Catherine Harmer, Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience, University of Oxford









#4 'Dignity means treating all aspects of a patient's health, and giving mental health equal importance as physical. Many mental disorders have comparable or higher risks of morality than heavy smoking, and reduced life expectancy 10-20 yrs.'

Seena Fazel, Professor of Forensic Psychiatry, University of Oxford

#5 'We are working towards involving patients in deciding what research we do, how we do it, and what is done with the results. In so doing, we hope to better understand how to respect their dignity, on their terms.'

Professor John Geddes, Head of Department

#6 'Dignity in Mental Health for children and young people means that they are recognised for their capacities by adults and peers, and involved in medical decision-making whenever possible.'

Ilina Singh, Professor of Neuroscience and Society


Follow Department of Psychiatry, University of Oxford on Twitter

Oxford Mail: read testimony of a former Oxfordshire patient: 'Thanks for helping me get my life back'


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