Last Friday afternoon I took the opportunity to visit the End of an Era exhibition at Whitchurch Hospital. The hospital opened in 1908, for more than a century providing inpatient mental health care for the people of Cardiff and its surroundings. Now, all clinical staff and current inpatients are about to move to a newly built facility in the grounds of Llandough Hospital in the Vale of Glamorgan.
The exhibition was the work of the Whitchurch Hospital Historical Society, and was excellent. Extracts from the written archives, images and objects were on display, painting a fascinating picture of life inside the hospital over the decades. I hope a permanent home is found for at least some of this in the future. Here, for now, are some of the photographs I took.
Meanwhile, here is what people have been saying about the new Hafan y Coed unit which is about to open at the start of April 2016:
Lots of interesting things to report from a packed week. Monday took me to a meet-up with research-minded nurses from Cardiff and Vale UHB, the first of a series of events organised by Professor Lesley Lowes aimed at supporting research capacity and engagement amongst practitioners. Here’s the flyer:
In her presentation, Bridie Evans made use of a segment from a NISCHR CRC video introducing the work of Involving People. This has been uploaded to the NISCHR CRC YouTube channel, where the part Bridie used begins at around the 1:53 mark:
Yesterday was the first Mental Health Nurse Academics UK meeting of the 2014-15 academic year. We convened in Manchester, with public involvement and engagement in mental health research and education the theme for the pre-business part of the day. Lauren Walker and Lindsey Cree led with an excellent presentation drawing on their service user and carer researcher experiences working on the Enhancing the Quality of User Involved Care Planning in Mental Health Services (EQUIP) study. Steven Pryjmachuk and I talked about our experiences of involving young people in research, drawing on Steven’s self-care project and our shared RiSC study. John Baker closed this part of the day with an impressive University of Manchester case study of how public and patient involvement in research and education can be embedded at institutional level.
Elsewhere in yesterday’s MHNAUK meeting there was a lively discussion around the promotion of physical health and well-being in people using mental health services, and a review of this year’s NPNR conference. Plans are also being laid for next year’s event, with opportunities about to be notified for people interested in becoming more involved via membership of the conference organising committee.
Sadly for me I couldn’t be at Geoff Brennan‘s meet-up today with Cardiff and Value UHB mental health nurses to talk about the Safewards study and its implications. But here’s a message Geoff sent, and a fine photo, to mark the occasion:
Yesterday I made it to the SWALEC Stadium for the annual Cardiff and Vale UHB Mental Health R&D meeting. I was pleased to again be invited, and appreciated the opportunity to talk about mental health research activity across the new School of Healthcare Sciences.
I was also reminded of the work of the National Centre for Mental Health (NCMH). Funded as Wales’ only Biomedical Research Centre by the National Institute for Social Care and Health Research (NISCHR), and led by Professor Nick Craddock, the NCMH supports mental health research, undertakes mental health research and communicates and engages. Newly housed in Cardiff University’s Hadyn Ellis Building, members of the NCMH do all three elements extremely well. The Centre’s website has recently been revamped, and is well worth a visit. Here, too, is an NCMH call for volunteers video:
Following an afternoon interviewing potential new mental health nursing students, today it’s all about research and development. I’m off to Cardiff and Vale University Health Board’s annual mental health R&D meet-up, which on this occasion is titled ‘Updates, Opportunities and Overcoming Challenges’. The agenda is pretty packed, and includes (in the morning) an overview of, and progress report on, the National Centre for Mental Health. There’s also a session scheduled on research funding schemes managed by the National Institute for Social Care and Health Research (NISCHR). NISCHR is supported by the Welsh Government, and develops policy and priorities for health and social care research. It also directly supports research activity through its registered research groups and via its various competitive funding schemes.