While it is important not to dismiss the role medication has in managing mental health it is striking the amount of clients who contact us upset at being prescribed medication without any structured form of assessment.
Many of these clients are upset they are being put on medication first instead of getting offered counselling or alternative supports. In many of these cases NICE guidelines actually concur with these client’s views by highlighting that medication should not be the first step in terms of recommended best practice.
We also get a lot of enquiries from those trying to come off medication struggling to find resources beyond their GP appointment. The below article demonstrates the disparity in investment between medication & counselling in primary care. It is also worth noting that counselling in primary care (CIPC) is only available on a short term basis to medical card holders leaving many clients struggling with the costs of private therapy generally not covered by private health insurers.
The increase in discussion and awareness about mental health is very welcome but there is a long way to go in terms of seeing the same level of improvement in actual services, supports and resources for clients outside medication.