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Rethink and MDF form new recovery partnership

Two leading UK mental health charities, Rethink and MDF The Bipolar Organisation, have formed a new partnership with pharmaceutical company, AstraZeneca
Two leading UK mental health charities, Rethink and MDF The Bipolar Organisation, have formed a new partnership with pharmaceutical company, AstraZeneca (AZ), to help put the issue of recovery at the centre of mental health reform.

AZ is sponsoring the partnership and project that comprises of experiential research into what hinders and what facilitates recovery from mental illnesses, with results of the studies expected in the latter part of 2008.

The research project, which AZ, Rethink and MDF have called the first of its kind, will train and employ seven service users (patients recovering from mental illness) from across the UK to carry out the survey and questionnaires. According to AZ, the unique aspect of this research project will be the insight and experience the service users will be able to interject into the survey findings.

"People often feel uncomfortable talking about these issues and what works for them, so working with service users to conduct the research will hopefully encourage the research participants to open up," said Dr Larsen, head of evaluation at Rethink. "By working with service users to conduct this research in the first place, we anticipate it will provide better guidance on how we can improve our service and enable more people who use our services."

Larsen explained that recovery from mental illness is central to the activities of Rethink as is working with all people affected by severe mental health problems to help them achieve a better a quality of life. The charity is keen to learn what recovery means to people with mental health problems in order to create better understanding between doctors, patients and carers so the level of care can be improved.

"The research will provide valuable insights into the recovery process which will allow clinical practice to be adapted accordingly," said Phil Krzyzek, mental health partnership leader at AZ.

15th July 2008

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