Yesterday I attended a meeting of the Mental Health Commission’s Pharmacotherapy Advisory Group at their offices at Gladesville Hospital. The idea was to give more emphasis on lived experience to their medication postcard project.
The group was a mix of senior public health clinicians including pharmacists and psychiatrists as well as an ARAFMI (carer) representative, and five people with lived experience. We talked about the design, distribution and content of the postcard, which stems from the Medication and Mental Illness report the Commission has worked on for the past two years. The concept is that the postcard can be taken to a clinician appointment and prompts the consumer to ask questions about treatment alternatives, side effects, costs, how the meds will support recovery goals and things the clinician and consumer need to share.
Insider info: the public system are getting their own card to emphasise consumers’ rights when prescribed medication. I guess this is a reflection on the fact that these things aren’t particularly well done on inpatient units and in community mental health centres by NSW Health.
The meeting was a good chance to make a contribution as well as get paid🙂 I shared a cab with someone I knew from my mental health days and we’re probably both going to the ‘perspectives on madness’ reading group next week. It was also an opportunity to get used to how things are done in the sector before starting work at the MHCC next week, which I am looking forward to.