Campaign report sets out what service users want from mental health services

A report from the ‘Taking the Wheel’ campaign will be launched in the Oriel Gallery of the Senedd by Health and Social Services Minister Lesley Griffiths AM on Tuesday October 11th.

The report, ‘What Users Want!’, provides feedback on the popular client-led campaign which Hafal has been supporting in partnership with MDF the Bipolar Organisation Cymru and the Mental Health Foundation. The campaign empowered mental health service users to take control of their lives and the services they receive.

Health and Social Services Minister Lesley Griffiths said: “‘Taking the Wheel’ acts as an excellent metaphor for the recovery approach in mental health – something which I strongly support – where people, working with professionals, can take control and drive improvements to benefit their mental health, and be directly involved in their care and treatment. This is in line with our commitment to use the legislative powers of the Mental Health Measure. From next year, this will mean mental health support services will be available within primary care in all local authority areas, and service users will benefit from integrated and individual care and treatment plans.”

‘Taking the Wheel’, which ran from May until September, engaged people receiving secondary mental health services or who have serious mental illnesses such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and other diagnoses which typically require high levels of care to take the driving seat in managing their own recovery from serious mental illness.

The clear message emerging from ‘What Users Want!’ is that service users want help across a wide range of Care Planning areas. Significantly, service users view the Care and Treatment Plan as the means of ensuring that mental health services are shaped by patients’ needs.

Hafal Expert Patient Trainer Dave Smith explained: “I’ve spoken to a lot of fellow service users during the campaign and the consensus is that we don’t expect vast new resources for mental health services. We know that this isn’t going to happen anyway. But we do want client-centred services. And we’re agreed that this can be can be done concretely by using Part 2 of the Measure which concerns care planning.

“Service users want individual Care and Treatment Plans but it’s not good enough to make these Plans fit the services available. Services should be based on what’s in the Plans, not the other way round. And there should be enough flexibility in the provision of services so that they can meet every individual’s needs.”

To read the “What Users Want!” report please visit: