On the Ward: Episode 4 reveals what it’s like to move on from a mental health hospital

LISTEN: S1: Ep4 | On the Ward : Moving On

Episode 4 of the five-part podcast focuses on what happens when patients leave secure care and return to life in the community. It features two patient voices, who soon hope to be discharged from St Andrew’s.

One of the patients featured has been in secure services for more than 10 years and is soon to be discharged to go a rehab facility.

“I’m quite fortunate I’m going to be in the community,” she tells John-Barry Waldron, the staff nurse who hosts the podcast.

“I have so much insight through therapy….I feel like I’m in quite a fortunate place….and being in services has given me that.”

The patient explains that her recovery has been helped by relationships, believing in yourself and putting in the hard work, and she advises anyone suffering from mental health problems to open up and speak.

“If you’ve got mental health problems, the worst thing you can do is hide it and block it up.

“It’s about talking, it’s about letting people know how you are feeling, share your pain,” she says.

Another one of the patients featured is in his mid-20s. During the episode he explains how before being admitted to secure care he was a “broken man” and often had run-ins with the law.

He then got hit by a bus which he said completely changed his life, for the better.

“The best thing that’s happened to me in my whole life, is getting hit by the bus,” he tells John.

 The accident, which involved a double decker bus left the patient fighting for his life in A&E, where doctors delivered the devastating news to his family that he may not survive. Despite pulling through, he was left with acquired brain injury and organic personality disorder.

Struggling to cope, the patient explained that he couldn’t see a way out and as a cry for help he took a bladed item with him to a probation meeting, which led to him being sectioned under the Mental Health Act.

Even though he’s now looking forward to leaving hospital, the patient explains that the three years of being in secure care has given time for his brain to heal and he now feels “on top of the world.”

He also delivered an important message to his peers, who may be involved in knife or gun crime.

“If you’re out on the streets and you’re following the wrong path… drug dealing or banging guns… I’m telling you now from experience… it’s not worth it.”

Episode 4 is out now on iTunes, Google Play and Stitcher.