November 2012

Information Sheet 13 - The Carers Strategies (Wales) Measure 2010

Our latest Information Sheet is a briefing note for GPs and primary care practitioners entitled The Carers Strategies (Wales) Measure 2010.

This new legislation covers carers of all ages - including young carers - and our latest Information Sheet outlines its key objectives.

The Carers Strategies (Wales) Measure 2010 requires Local Health Boards, Velindre NHS Trust and the Wales Ambulance Trust to draw up a strategy to ensure unpaid family carers receive essential information and are consulted about the care of the people they look after.

The draft strategies have been submitted to Welsh Government and are awaiting approval for implementation but you can find out more by reading and downloading Information Sheet 13.

Like all our Information Sheets this latest document aims to help raise awareness about and improve mental health services across the country.

Each of our sheets have been developed to provide valuable information, training and support tools on primary care mental health in Wales.

Their publication comes under the set objectives of our Gold Standard Project which has set the goal of providing good communication on mental health issues .

We have a range of other Information Sheets which are all available to download and view on and from our Information Sheets page.

If you have any questions about Information Sheet 13 or trouble viewing or downloading it please contact our Project Manager Lesley Hills via email at or on 029 2050 4516.

Carers Wales - The Voice of 350,000-plus People In Wales

Carers Wales is a charity set up to help the 350,000-plus people in Wales who care for family or friends. 

According to Carers Wales, at some point almost every one of us will be involved in looking after an older relative, sick friend or disabled family member with carers providing 96% of all community care across the country.

Without carers, the Welsh NHS would collapse as it would be left to face a £7.7 billion care bill it cannot afford.

However, caring also takes its toll on carers' own personal finances, health, career, family and social life with many forced to give up work to care and rely on low-level benefits, forcing them into poverty.

In return many carers may face, isolation, worry and get little or no recognition of support for what they do which is where Carers Wales can help.

The organisation supports carers by providing information and advice about caring and helps them make the most of their finances, juggle their career and caring lives and offer them a listening ear with support when they need it.

On a wider scale, the charity campaigns for change to make life better for carers and the people they look after, influencing policy through its research based on carers' real-life experiences.

Carers Wales is part of Carers UK which runs a 24/7 website forum where carers can talk to others in a similar situation and get help from those who truly know how they feel.

It also runs an adviceline - open from 10am to 12pm and 2pm to 4pm on Wednesdays and Thursdays - available on 0808 808 7777.

We decided to highlight the work of Carers Wales because on Friday we will be publishing our latest Information Sheet which concentrates on the subject of carers and the impacts of the The Carers Strategies (Wales) Measure 2010.

Please return to our website on Friday where you will be able to download our latest Information Sheet and find out more about caring across Wales.

Site Helps Wales Make Informed Decisions on Mental Health Medication

Medication is one form of treatment which can help relieve some of the symptoms of mental illness and there's a new website to answer all your questions about these different types of drugs.

The free Mental Health and Medication Wales website has been created to help patients, carers and professionals across Wales make informed decisions about mental health conditions, treatments and medications.

The site is a source of accurate, simple and helpful information to help improve your understanding of mental illness and improve diagnosis, treatment and support for those affected.

The site is split up into a variety of helpful sections which answer all your important questions about different types of medication explaining their different side effects and interactions with other medication, food and drink.

You can search for information about medication by category and by name and the site also contains sections about how to get the best out of your GP as well as a comprehensive library containing printable leaflets on a long list of mental health medications.

All its contents are independent and quality assured and written by specialist pharmacists, based on the best-available evidence.

Access to the site has been provided by National Centre for Mental Health (NCMH) and Bipolar Education Programme Cymru and is endorsed by The College of Mental Health Pharmacy.

For further information please visit the Mental Health and Medication Wales site. Alternatively, for further links to other helpful mental health organisations and helplines across Wales please visit our Helplines and Links section.

Mental Health News Sources from Around the Web

One of our aims is to promote primary mental health care and services across Wales by providing you with news about what's going on in the world of mental health.

Each week we'll do our best to highlight the latest mental health news stories which we come across but if you want to try and find them yourself then the following news websites are a good place to start:

In the meantime, if you've got any mental health news which you'd like to share - please feel free to email anything updates you have to us at

Alternatively, if you have any questions about WaMH in PC and our work within primary mental health care please contact us on 029 2050 4516.

Videos Help Explain Part 1 of The Mental Health Measure

We recently released a series of videos to explain the implications of the Part 1 of the Mental Health (Wales) Measure for primary care staff across Wales.

The videos are just one part of our Part 1 - Downloadable Resource which has been created to help GPs and their teams understand this new legislation is going to change mental health services across Wales.

We urge you to spend a minutes of your time watching each of our short films which are all available from our Part 1- Videos section and via on our WaMHinPC YouTube Channel.

If you have trouble viewing YouTube videos in your work place you can also view or download the video below via the following link Part 1: Short Google Link.

If you encounter any problems viewing any of our videos or want to find out more about Part 1 of the Measure please contact us via email at or on 029 2050 4516.

Dementia Initiative Aims To Make A Million Friends

Link to Dementia Friends websiteA new national scheme is aiming to create a million-strong UK support network of volunteers, carers and helpers by 2015 to change the way the nation thinks, talks and acts about dementia.

Dementia Friends is an Alzheimer’s Society initiative which aims to make everyday life better for people with dementia by passing on the know-how to help people with dementia feel understood and included in their community. 

Being a Dementia Friend is about turning understanding into action and will work through things like asking volunteers to give a helping hand to someone struggling to get on the right bus through to encouraging someone else to become a Dementia Friend.

No action is too big or too small and the scheme plans to equip 'Friends' with an understanding of dementia explaining how they can help people with dementia in every community, every hospital ward, post office, place of worship and on every street across the country.

You can take the first step to becoming a 'Friend' by registering your interest through the Dementia Friends website and help start building a network of 'Friends' in your local area.
The organisers need people to volunteer and they'll then keep everyone up to date with all the exciting developments as the project builds across the country. 

Dementia is caused by diseases of the brain and symptoms include the gradual loss of memory, reasoning and communication skills.

However, people who have dementia are not alone and they and their carers can still have a good quality of life.

There are different types of dementia with the most common being Alzheimer’s disease and vascular dementia.

The following organisations provide advice and support for with dementia and their families and can be contacted using the following websites and telephone numbers:

If you have any questions about WaMH in PC's work with dementia in Wales please visit our Dementia section or contact us via email at or on 029 2050 4516.

Doctors to Test All Pensioners for Dementia

As an organisation we have strong interest in raising awareness about dementia and were pleased to see the Prime Minister announcing two new schemes to combat the condition.

In the new pilot schemes, GPs using iPad-compatible software will test people for normal or abnormal memory in 10 minutes. 

Pensioners will also be given memory tests every time they visit a doctor or nurse and 1million people - including bank and shop workers and schoolchildren - will be offered training under a Dementia Friends scheme so they can help those who need extra assistance.

For more about the two initiatives please read Doctors to Test All Pensioners for Dementia on The Telegraph website.

There are currently just over 42,700 people living with dementia in Wales, and it is important to note that the effect on the individual is different in each case. 

This is not just a problem affecting Wales - the most up-to-date statistics show that the numbers of people with dementia are rising across the UK and the world with an estimated 35 million people with dementia worldwide.

Much work has taken place in Wales recently to identify the areas that need to be addressed to improve the lives of those with and affected by dementia.

This has led to the creation of the National Dementia Vision for Wales which provides a long-term vision to ensure  Wales can best meet the challenge of an increasing number of people living with dementia across the country.

If you have any questions about WaMH in PC's work with dementia in Wales please visit our Dementia section or contact us via email at or on 029 2050 4516.

New Section Attracts Hundreds of Visitors

Our recently published Mental Health Measure section is proving a great success with four times as many visitors findint their way to our site following its launch.

We added our new Part 1 - Downloadable Resource a fortnight ago to help GPs and their teams understand the first part of the Mental Health Measure which came into force in October.

The new web pages contain links to a variety of documents and videos which explain the various impacts of the new legislation with more than 800 visitors coming to our site since the section went live on 31 October.

Our site usually attracts around 100 visitors a week but the new information has helped bring in a lot more visitors proving that people are interested in finding our more about the Measure.

Our new series of videos have proved the most successfull with more more than 400 views between them over the past two weeks.

In fact, we'd urge you to spend a few minutes of your time watching each of the videos which you can access through the following link - Part 1 - Videos.

Part 1 of the Measure makes it a legal requirement for Local Health Board and Local Authorities to work together to expand and strengthen primary care mental health services for people of all ages.

If you're a mental health professional, then we'd urge you to take a few minutes to explore our new Part 1 - Downloadable Resource section which we have split up into the following 3 distinct sections:

  • Guidance - A series of links to supporting documents and guidance for Part 1 of the Measure
  • Legislation - A series of links to legislation and regulations behind Part 1 of the Measure
  • Videos - A series of videos explaining Part 1 of the Measure

In the meantime, if you've got any questions about the Measure or the work WaMH in PC carries out across Wales please contact us via email at or on 029 2050 4516.