Discuss One Change You Would Like To See In Mental Health Services Or Practice. Describe What Would Need To Happen For The Change To Be Achieved A

1935 words - 8 pages

Discuss the challenges and benefits involved in using a health promotion approach to tackle the levels of depression experienced within the general population
The Royal College of Psychiatrists (2010) report that depression affects one in four people during their lives and it is predicted that by 2020 depression will be ranked number two in the top ranking international health burdens (WHO 2001).These statistics show that it is important to reduce the levels of depression experienced within the population. This essay will consider if using a health promotion approach could help to achieve this by exploring the elements that contribute to the cause of depression and the impact it has on ...view middle of the document...

It looks for any social, environmental, economic or political issues that may have caused or exacerbated the depression. (The Open University, 2008b, p.105). Culture also needs to be considered, in eastern culture depression is not generally accepted and this can result in the presentation of depression as a physical illness to avoid the stigma attached to mental illness. When culture isn’t considered practitioners could misdiagnose accepting the somatic presentation instead of considering depression (Chou, J, 2005).
Depression impacts every area of life, the individual, their family and friends it can exacerbate physical illness and sometimes results in suicide. Depression affects the economy personally and nationally in loss of work hours and benefits paid. (Depression Alliance, 2008). Bronwyn’s story in the course materials (The Open University, 2008, pp28-40) highlight how social isolation, a declining environment, unemployment and government cutbacks can contribute to the experience of depression. Evidence supports this showing that certain groups are more vulnerable than others. Research, studies can help to determine that low income groups, those who are unemployed or those who live in a declining environment are more likely to experience depression. It is more challenging however to gather information that gives more specific answers that explains why depression is experienced. This information would make promotion strategies more effective as specific needs have to be identified before they can be addressed. Another challenge to getting accurate information is that many who experience depression don’t engage with services so their experience is not recorded (WHO, 2003; The Open University, 2008f, p.111-116).
Seedhouse in the Open University (2008f, p.107) claims that the promotion of mental health is values driven and the values of practitioners can influence decisions made regarding health promotion. Practitioners may have values that are rooted in religion or political beliefs that influence their perspective regarding strategies they use and responses towards others. Stephens (2008) agrees that from evidence to practice choices made in health promotion reflect the values of the practitioner. However all practitioners do have to use beneficence to ensure care is beneficial for the service user and non-maleficence to avoid causing harm (The Open University, 2008c, pp.14-25).
Strategies that promote mental health and can reduce levels of depression either focus on individuals or on a societal basis and decision makers hold diverse opinions about addressing promotion. For example the medical and psychological viewpoints favour the individual approach strengthening, working on prevention, increasing resilience and self-esteem, developing coping skills, resourcefulness and purpose. Education and early intervention is important for example training frontline workers to recognise the symptoms of depression early as it is reported that...

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