ECT: Is stigma preventing better care for depression?

electroconvulsive therapy ECT

For more than a year and a half, Hank Greely, a Stanford law professor, watched as an elderly family member slipped further and further into depression. One time, when another family member said a chore would become a problem if it wasn’t done in the next week, the reply came: “there won’t be a next week.”

Stigma around dementia prevents people from accessing health care

Mary Beth Wighton has many good days. Like mother’s day, when her 20-year-old gave Wighton and her partner fishing licenses and the three spent the day looking out over the dock, laughing and casting out. She also has tough moments, like when she realized that she could no longer pay household bills on her own.

Physician health: reducing stigma and improving care

John Bradford always prided himself on being psychologically tough. After all, he needed to be. As one of Canada’s top forensic psychiatrists, he analyzed some of the country’s most high-profile murderers including Paul Bernardo, Karla Homolka and Robert Pickton. In order to keep healthy and reduce stress, Bradford exercised regularly and played competitive squash and

It’s time to make addictions medicine a bigger part of medical education

Prabhpreet Hundal Healthy Debate blogger

Approximately 1 in 10 Canadians describe symptoms consistent with alcohol or illicit drug dependence. Yet, the undergraduate medical education system devotes a total of 12 hours of curricular time to addiction medicine, not a proportionate response to the severity of the problem. Addictions place a serious burden on the healthcare system, costing Canadians an estimated

Strengthening primary care for child and youth mental health

Strengthening primary care for child and youth mental health

Chris’ story Chris is a family doctor at a Family Health Team in a Southern Ontario farming community (some details including his name have been changed to protect his and his patients’ identities). He sees many children and youth who have mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety and severe ADHD. While he can care for

The media’s damaging impact on public perception of electroconvulsive therapy

Doug Weir blogger ontario medical association

Stigma is a significant challenge that infects every issue surrounding mental illness. Mass media depictions of mental illness and treatments of psychiatric disorders perpetuate misconceptions by repeated presentation of negative stereotypes. The impact is seen when patients with mental illness are reluctant to seek the treatment they need. Negative depictions of Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) contribute

Why are relatively few schizophrenics treated?

Why do so few schizophrenics get treatment?

In our society, the disease of schizophrenia is shrouded in fear, isolation and ignorance. The initial symptoms, which include hearing voices, mental delusions and paranoia, may at first be attributed to a bad day, an odd drug reaction, or any other number of conditions. Someone having these experiences does not suspect that a journey is

Addiction: bridging the emotional barrier to effective care

People who suffer from addiction don’t always put their best foot forward.  Often an individual under the influence (or withdrawing from) a substance will engage in all kinds of unsightly, anti-social behaviour.  From my limited medical student window into their life, I get to witness some of this behaviour up close.  Perhaps they are acting

My experience with stigma within the health care profession

Mental Health Addictions Stigma

I would like to start out by thanking all the fantastic health care workers. As a recovering person with diagnosed concurrent disorders – having both addictions and mental health issues – I have seen the challenges and abuse often faced by doctors, nurses, counsellors and support staff working within the healthcare system. This article is

“Just say no” to the war on drugs

Kathy Hardill healthydebate blogger

In recent years, health care has embraced the concept of “evidence based” practice. We incorporate this daily in our diverse work settings. We invoke it when we mentor students. We know, for example, that rigorous control of blood sugar levels in people with diabetes reduces their risk of organ damage – and so we aim