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Wednesday, 30 March 2005 17:39
BNN: British Nursing News Online · www.bnn-online.co.uk
First National Mental Health and Ethnicity Census
Mental health services across England and Wales will take part in 'Count Me In: the first National Mental Health and Ethnicity Census.

The census will give a snapshot of all inpatients in NHS and independent mental health facilities in England and Wales and will provide a benchmark against which future improvements can be measured. Information on ethnicity, language, religion, any periods of seclusion and recorded injury to patients will all be collected as part of the census.

Professor Kamlesh Patel, Chairman of the Mental Health Act Commission and a commissioner at the Healthcare Commission said: "It is crucial that mental health service providers register their involvement in the census. Ethnic monitoring has been required of NHS providers since 1995 - so it's definitely time for providers to tackle this much neglected area. Mental health service providers need to show how they are catering for the needs of Black and ethnic minority groups. By taking part in the census, service providers will make a positive step towards developing culturally relevant and appropriate services”.

Anna Walker, chief executive of the Healthcare Commission, said:
"The Count Me In census will enable mental health services to focus more sensitively on the needs of black and minority ethnic service users. Currently, poor monitoring of ethnicity means that healthcare providers are not always getting it right when it comes to this patient group. I know the mental health service is as keen as the Healthcare Commission is to see improvement in this area".

Chris Heginbotham, chief executive of the Mental Health Act Commission said:

"The Census will provide a benchmark against which to measure improvements in mental health care for Black and minority ethnic service users. All providers must use this opportunity to develop culturally relevant and appropriate services”.

Professor Louis Appleby, National Director for Mental Health said:

"We welcome this as an essential part of our aim to eliminate inequalities in what services provide and in particular in ending the disproportionate use of the MHA in young black patients”.

Marcel Vige, Manager of Diverse Minds at the mental health charity Mind said:

"Mind welcomes this move to address the needs of the black and ethnic minority communities. Our primary concern is how this information will contribute to improving the long-standing problems faced by the sorely neglected black and ethnic minority service users”.


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