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Mental health workshop for city health leaders

Mental health in Plymouth will be the topic of discussion when the Council's Health and Wellbeing Board meet with partners from across the city this week.

By taking part in a virtual workshop on Thursday, medical and community experts from several different sectors will identify priorities and actions in Plymouth to improve mental health and wellbeing and reduce inequalities. 

Joining Council colleagues will be representations from commissioning partners, Mind, The Advocacy People and Improving Lives Plymouth.

Over the past six months, COVID-19 and the measures necessary to reduce transmission, have had a large effect on the mental health and wellbeing of many residents. 

The stresses and strains that many people find themselves under are experienced differently by different people from many different backgrounds. 

Councillor Kate Taylor, chair of the Health and Wellbeing Board and Cabinet member for Health and Adult Social Care, explains.

"The impact of the pandemic is far-reaching and long-lasting, and comes at a time when health inequalities were already increasing," said Kate.

"As a city we need to come together, understand the issues in more detail and, most importantly, do something about it.”

"We know that people right across the city have different experiences of mental health support, whether that is through mental health services themselves or through smaller, more local projects which support those who are struggling. 

"We have a huge raft of incredible organisations in the city who continue to provide support to those who need it most, but we recognise we need to do better – this means looking at what we do well, where the gaps are and how we can bridge them to ensure people are never left alone without support. 

"This is just one small part of building a city where residents are happy and healthy.”

Dr Ruth Harrell, the Director of Public Health for Plymouth, added: “Both the direct and indirect impacts of COVID-19 on people’s health are very significant. We need to identify the ways in which health is being affected, who it’s affecting, and respond accordingly.”