Why is mental health care so much better than cancer care? Watch

medds
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So the BBC released this NHS tracker thing where you can see if your local hospital is above or below targets:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-41483322

Aside from the local interest factor, one thing that struck me is the difference between mental health targets and the rest. Not only are mental health targets greatly exceeded by and large (in complete contrast to all other targets), the targets themselves also seem tougher, at least superficially? Compare:

Nationwide 79.4% of patients start cancer treatment within 62 days of referral

Nationwide 89.5% of patients start mental health therapy within 42 days of referral.

That seems kind of crazy to me? Not to belittle mental health in the slightest, but surely cancer is lethal far more often, and yet its target is a full 20 days more, and its achieved a full 10% less?

Its also just very against the anecdotes i hear about people waiting months and months for mental health treatments.

Anyone care to enlighten?
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CoolCavy
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(Original post by medds)
Its also just very against the anecdotes i hear about people waiting months and months for mental health treatments.

?
you have to be joking. Cancer gets so much funding and charity coverage and press coverage and boo hoo how sad. Cancer gets 22x more funding than suicide
Mental health can be just as lethal, some cancers are stage one and not very urgent at all
why are you against the anecdotes? cos they are true? DBT waitlists are a year.

Ridiculous.
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medds
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(Original post by CoolCavy)
you have to be joking. Cancer gets so much funding and charity coverage and press coverage and boo hoo how sad. Cancer gets 22x more funding than MH
Mental health can be just as lethal, some cancers are stage one and not very urgent at all
Wow 22x more funding do you have a source?

I think its a bit crazy that you are arguing that mental health is as lethal as cancer when it obviously isn't, but that is not my point at all. In fact I'm not arguing either way - I'm asking about the article. Did you read it?

(Original post by CoolCavy)
why are you against the anecdotes? cos they are true? DBT waitlists are a year.

Ridiculous.
I'm not against the anecdotes - the article seems to be. If its not DBT then what treatments ARE being initiated within 6 weeks?
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_R_
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I'm gonna have to agree with CoolCavy here. There is so much cancer awareness in this country, but most people don't know what bipolar disorder(for example) really entails. Aside from anxiety or depression, there's not really much coverage.
Ask any person and they can name so many cancer charities: macmillan; marie curie; cancer research uk, etc. but for mental health?
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ecolier
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(Original post by medds)
So the BBC released this NHS tracker thing where you can see if your local hospital is above or below targets:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-41483322

Aside from the local interest factor, one thing that struck me is the difference between mental health targets and the rest. Not only are mental health targets greatly exceeded by and large (in complete contrast to all other targets), the targets themselves also seem tougher, at least superficially? Compare:

Nationwide 79.4% of patients start cancer treatment within 62 days of referral

Nationwide 89.5% of patients start mental health therapy within 42 days of referral.

That seems kind of crazy to me? Not to belittle mental health in the slightest, but surely cancer is lethal far more often, and yet its target is a full 20 days more, and its achieved a full 10% less?

Its also just very against the anecdotes i hear about people waiting months and months for mental health treatments.

Anyone care to enlighten?
You cannot just look at the numbers. Cancer affects millions more people and people tend to seek treatment for cancer, as opposed to mental health. Sadly there is still a big stigma in seeking help in psychiatry. The demand therefore is going to be a lot higher in oncology.

(Original post by CoolCavy)
you have to be joking. Cancer gets so much funding and charity coverage and press coverage and boo hoo how sad. Cancer gets 22x more funding than suicide
Mental health can be just as lethal, some cancers are stage one and not very urgent at all
why are you against the anecdotes? cos they are true? DBT waitlists are a year.

Ridiculous.
Agreed. Mental health is so underfunded it's actually ridiculous.

I am surprised it's only 22x. Cancer is at the forefront of (virtually) everyone's thoughts, whereas (again sadly) no one bats an eyelid to mental health problems.

(Original post by _R_)
I'm gonna have to agree with CoolCavy here. There is so much cancer awareness in this country, but most people don't know what bipolar disorder(for example) really entails. Aside from anxiety or depression, there's not really much coverage.
Ask any person and they can name so many cancer charities: macmillan; marie curie; cancer research uk, etc. but for mental health?
Mind? I am a doctor (and a neurology one too) though so I am not any person. I do agree absolutely that mental health is sooo underfunded.
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CoolCavy
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(Original post by medds)
Wow 22x more funding do you have a source?

I think its a bit crazy that you are arguing that mental health is as lethal as cancer when it obviously isn't, but that is not my point at all. In fact I'm not arguing either way - I'm asking about the article. Did you read it?



I'm not against the anecdotes - the article seems to be. If its not DBS then what treatments ARE being initiated within 6 weeks?
DBS? can you get the name right :rolleyes: its DBT. and the stuff initiated after 6 weeks would be in my guess primary IAPT care which is very low level 'therapy' and are often group courses about stress management etc. If you have anything more major than very mild anxiety and depression the waitlists are astronomical. Nevermind the actual waitlists to see a psych to actually get diagnosed in the first place to access the therapy
Yes i do have a source it was in this documentary about male suicide https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p06...being&ns_fee=0
Mental health can be as lethal as cancer :lol: jesus christ. Suicide is the bigger killer than cancer for males under 50, dont be so ignorant.
Read the article the other day.

Go up to someone and say you have cancer, no stigma at all, oh how sad let me pour the world's resources into you
Go up to someone and say you have schizophrenia, BPD, Bipolar, oh you're just making excuses, media portrays you as dangerous and manipulative. There isnt even an individual charity for most things it is all just 'covered' by MIND
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CoolCavy
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(Original post by _R_)
I'm gonna have to agree with CoolCavy here. There is so much cancer awareness in this country, but most people don't know what bipolar disorder(for example) really entails. Aside from anxiety or depression, there's not really much coverage.
Ask any person and they can name so many cancer charities: macmillan; marie curie; cancer research uk, etc. but for mental health?
100% agree, thank you. Members of my family who have had cancer say they would prefer to have cancer than mental illness as the treatment and awareness is so much greater

(Original post by ecolier)
You cannot just look at the numbers. Cancer affects millions more people and people tend to seek treatment for cancer, as opposed to mental health. Sadly there is still a big stigma in seeking help in psychiatry. The demand therefore is going to be a lot higher in oncology.



Agreed. Mental health is so underfunded it's actually ridiculous.

I am surprised it's only 22x. Cancer is at the forefront of (virtually) everyone's thoughts, whereas (again sadly) no one bats an eyelid to mental health problems.
Thank you ecolier. Exactly. But then again what do you know, you only work in the NHS in the mental health department
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claireestelle
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(Original post by medds)
So the BBC released this NHS tracker thing where you can see if your local hospital is above or below targets:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-41483322

Aside from the local interest factor, one thing that struck me is the difference between mental health targets and the rest. Not only are mental health targets greatly exceeded by and large (in complete contrast to all other targets), the targets themselves also seem tougher, at least superficially? Compare:

Nationwide 79.4% of patients start cancer treatment within 62 days of referral

Nationwide 89.5% of patients start mental health therapy within 42 days of referral.

That seems kind of crazy to me? Not to belittle mental health in the slightest, but surely cancer is lethal far more often, and yet its target is a full 20 days more, and its achieved a full 10% less?

Its also just very against the anecdotes i hear about people waiting months and months for mental health treatments.

Anyone care to enlighten?
Both can lead to loss of life and can kill very quickly, any suffering that great being from physical conditions or mental conditions deserved to be treated in a timely manner. People will die on those waiting lists either way, i've seen a loss due to depression in my family (and friends suffering on waiting lists) and my second grandad is going to die from cancer in the next few months and I think it's difficult to understand either situation if you've not been in it yourself or seen it happen to someone close to you.
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CoolCavy
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(Original post by ecolier)
There is also a lot of stigma as I have mentioned in my previous post, even from family members and close friends because there is nothing physically wrong so people don't understand. I have heard so many people being told to "pull yourself together"? I don't see how that's useful at all.
Agree and there is so much minimising as well, 'oh im sooo OCD' 'im so depressed my favourite movie character died', no-one goes around claiming to be a 'little bit brain cancer'
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Royal Oak
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Ah I love a good thread that likes to bash mental health by using ignorance. A classic TSR thread.
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_R_
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(Original post by Royal Oak)
Ah I love a good thread that likes to bash mental health by using ignorance. A classic TSR thread.
I wouldn't say 'bash' i'd say maybe poking it with a stick
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Joleee
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i would like to know what 'starting mental health therapy' means and if that means your initial interview, as i was referred for 'urgent' psychology by two(!) qualified professionals and i'm still on a 6-7 month waiting list. re cancer, i'm not sure but i suspect it's the sheer number of people needing treatment.
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medds
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(Original post by ecolier)
You cannot just look at the numbers. Cancer affects millions more people and people tend to seek treatment for cancer, as opposed to mental health. Sadly there is still a big stigma in seeking help in psychiatry. The demand therefore is going to be a lot higher in oncology.
Thanks for the response.

But i don't quite understand - the waiting time for cancer is longer because there are more patients? Shouldn't there be more services then?

Also is it really true that cancer is more common than depression and anxiety and bipolar all combined? I thought depression was really common?

(Original post by CoolCavy)
DBS? can you get the name right :rolleyes: its DBT.
Ok I made a mistake no need to bite my head off.

(Original post by CoolCavy)
...and the stuff initiated after 6 weeks would be in my guess primary IAPT care which is very low level 'therapy' and are often group courses about stress management etc. If you have anything more major than very mild anxiety and depression the waitlists are astronomical. Nevermind the actual waitlists to see a psych to actually get diagnosed in the first place to access the therapy
It is probably something like that. That would make sense. Its odd that the targets can't reflect that!

Yes i do have a source it was in this documentary about male suicide https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p06hqvrw?ns_mchannel=email&ns_so urce=pan_newsletter&ns_campaign= PANUK_NLT_34_ENG3months_SavingLi vesAtSea&ns_linkname=bbctwo_hori zonstoppingmalesuicide2018season mentalhealth_factualhealthwellbe ing&ns_fee=0
[/quote]

That looks interesting thank you.

(Original post by CoolCavy)
Mental health can be as lethal as cancer :lol: jesus christ. Suicide is the bigger killer than cancer for males under 30, dont be so ignorant.
Read the article the other day.
I can see that you are very passionate about this, but arguing they are as lethal as eachother is not a tenable position. You can argue about quality of life or funding issues, but not on raw deaths (every one tragic, of course).

Number of deaths from suicide = ~6,000
Number of deaths from cancer = ~166,000.
Which is about 22x higher, coincidentally. As in, actually a coincidence.

(Original post by CoolCavy)
Go up to someone and say you have cancer, no stigma at all, oh how sad let me pour the world's resources into you
Go up to someone and say you have schizophrenia, BPD, Bipolar, oh you're just making excuses, media portrays you as dangerous and manipulative. There isnt even an individual charity for most things it is all just 'covered' by MIND
Ok, i agree. I was just asking about the article.
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ecolier
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(Original post by medds)
Thanks for the response.

But i don't quite understand - the waiting time for cancer is longer because there are more patients? Shouldn't there be more services then?
Yes, but then as the population gets older there will be more demand. It's not like there's a bottomless pot of money and oncologists just waiting.

Also is it really true that cancer is more common than depression and anxiety and bipolar all combined? I thought depression was really common?
Depression is really common, and most likely grossly, utterly and completely under-diagnosed. Remember a lot of cancer patients have depression (probably the majority) too, and good mental health in oncology is good too.

Number of deaths from suicide = ~6,000
Number of deaths from cancer = ~166,000.
Which is about 22x higher, coincidentally.
Remember suicide is not all because of mental health, and not all mental health deaths are classified as suicide.
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medds
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(Original post by Royal Oak)
Ah I love a good thread that likes to bash mental health by using ignorance. A classic TSR thread.
Wow people are really sensitive about NHS targets...

I'm literally asking for help understanding the NHS targets - as you are so knowedgable would you like to inform me where all that data is incorrect?
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medds
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(Original post by Joleee)
i would like to know what 'starting mental health therapy' means and if that means your initial interview, as i was referred for 'urgent' psychology by two(!) qualified professionals and i'm still on a 6-7 month waiting list. re cancer, i'm not sure but i suspect it's the sheer number of people needing treatment.
That's very interesting thank you for responding. That's exactly the kind of thing i hear all the time so i was surprised to be reading differently in the article!

Can i ask who this initial interview was done by - might help me to understand what that nhs target actually means. Were you seen by them within 6 weeks of GP referral?
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CoolCavy
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(Original post by medds)
Wow people are really sensitive about NHS targets...
Of course they are, this stuff has very real life implications for the people dealing with it.
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medds
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(Original post by CoolCavy)
Of course they are, this stuff has very real life implications for the people dealing with it.
Yes, like dying of cancer.
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CoolCavy
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(Original post by medds)
Yes, like dying of cancer.
Yes or of suicide
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Pathway
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Therapy takes forever to happen. In my most recent therapy...waiting time, I waited over a year for an assessment for therapy and a few weeks after that I started therapy. Sometimes if you're very ill you can be seen urgently, like I was seen urgently by the Access Team and also the Eating Disorder Service (was seen in under a week post discharge from the home treatment team), but the actual therapy actually takes ages as there aren't enough psychologists working in the services for severe and enduring MH issues.

It's sad because people get very unwell and are then told they're too unwell to be seen. Frustrating.

Side note, my mum had cancer and she said she'd prefer to have that again than severe/enduring MH issues like I have. :dontknow:
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