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Published By  Lindsay
Council loses £1m sickness case

A council has lost its High Court case against a former managing director after claiming she withheld a history of depressive illness.

Cheltenham Borough Council was suing Christine Laird, 52, for £1m.

Mrs Laird was appointed in 2002, but left in 2005 on an ill-health pension after taking sick leave on full pay.

The council had claimed it suffered financial losses amounting to more than £1m including interest as a result of Mrs Laird's "deceit".

Andrew North, Chief Executive of Cheltenham Borough Council, said the authority was disappointed with the judgement.

"While the outcome is not what we had hoped for, we felt we had a duty to take action to recover losses for what we felt was a disastrous time for the council.

"Had the council known Mrs Laird's medical history it would most probably not have employed her and incurred the costs it has.


Published By  Forum Admin

Schizophrenia - "People Say I'm Crazy"

 by John Cadigan

Published 06/10/2009
I have schizophrenia, which is a brain disease that usually hits most severely when the brain reaches maturity—around 20 or 21 years old. I had my first psychotic break when I was in my senior year of college and have been disabled by the illness for over ten years now.

My official diagnosis is schizoaffective disorder, which means that in addition to having symptoms of schizophrenia, I also have trouble with depression. I'm lucky to have a very supportive family and a wonderful doctor who have helped me learn how to live with my illness. The new generation of anti-psychotic medications that became available in the mid-1990s made a big difference.

I'm doing so much better now than during the first horrible years of being sick. I have an art studio and am able to work a couple of hours a day. I'm able to live on my own now, and one of my best friends lives in my building. Lately I've become deeply interested in spirituality and have found a wonderful spiritual director through my church.

Everyone with schizophrenia needs to know there is hope. This is what helped me:
  • Find an understanding, kind doctor who knows a lot about schizophrenia and the latest treatments
  • Take advantage of local mental health services—sometimes they can help get you a case manager, a social worker, housing and even employment
  • Stop drinking alcohol and using drugs that aren't prescribed—they interfere with medication and make recovery almost impossible
  • Learn as much as you can about the nature of the illness, and then study your symptoms to figure out warning signs and ways to avoid bad episodes
*A Note from Forum Admin:
We found John on Twitter and we have been following him long after this short article was found buried on DF.  We greatly admire his wonderful courage and his art.
See his website at "People say I'm Crazy"
Read More:


Published By  Forum Admin

Mental Health Treatment: It's Commonly Accepted Yet Not So Easy To Obtain Or Understand

Seeing a psychologist or other mental health professional isn't an unusual thing; in fact it's relatively common. Nearly three in ten U.S. adults (29%) report that they have received treatment or therapy from a psychologist or other mental health professional. The survey also found that younger adults are more open to seeking mental health treatment than those over 50 and that many adults are not as discouraged from seeking treatment because of stigma or fear of others finding out.
Additional results of a nationwide study of 2,529 U.S. adults surveyed online between April 7 and 15, 2008 by Harris Interactive® in conjunction with the American Psychological Association are as follows:
-- Men (28%) and women (30%) are equally likely to have received treatment or therapy from a psychologist or other mental health professional;
-- Generationally, adults 65 and older are the least likely to have received treatment (17%) followed by those 50 - 64 years old (25%). Younger adults are more likely to have received therapy, especially those in their 20's (34%), and 30's (36%);


Published By  Lindsay

 Q:  Dr. Insel, as Director of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), you are in a unique position to give us an overview of psychiatry and mental health in the United States today. Where have we made the most progress in research and clinical practice?

A:  Progress in clinical practice has been most impressive in terms of treatment. Compared with when I trained some 30 years ago, we now have the ability to relieve the symptoms of most major psychiatric disorders, from schizophrenia to bipolar disorder to major depressive disorder, as well as most anxiety disorders. Those treatments fall largely into 2 categories: pharmacologic therapy and psychotherapeutic interventions, such as cognitive behavior therapy.


Published By  Lindsay
When Aymee discovered positive psychology in college, she set out to unlock the secret to lasting joy. Now an accredited happiness expert, she's made a career out of making people smile.


Published By  Forum Admin

Introducing Support Partners: Canine Companions-the newest component of Support Partners


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