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St Andrew’s Healthcare signs Equally Well UK Charter

We are proud to be part of the Equally Well UK Charter, a group of over 50 organisations who are working together to improve the physical health of people with mental illness.

The aim of the Equally Well Collaboration is to reduce the life expectancy gap between people living with mental illness and the general population. We know that people with severe mental illness are more likely to face life-limiting physical health problems, and often face difficulties in accessing good physical health support. St Andrew’s is committed to changing this, and improving the physical health of the people in our care.

Natalie Jennings, Deputy Director of Nursing and Physical Healthcare at St Andrew’s, proudly signed the pledge on behalf of the Charity. She explained: “St Andrew’s is delighted to be part of Equally Well and to contribute to this co-ordinated action towards improving the life expectancy and physical health of people with long term mental health conditions. Within the Charity we are striving towards an equal focus on physical and mental health at every level. We have signed the Charter to show our organisational pledge to this shared goal.”

Equally Well UK is bringing together organisations with a part to play in reducing the 15-20-year life expectancy gap facing people with a severe mental illness in Britain. The Charter has been set up in the UK by Centre for Mental Health, Kaleidoscope Health & Care and Rethink Mental Illness who are working with support from the Royal College of GPs and the Royal College of Psychiatrists and a growing membership of over 50 organisations – of which St Andrew’s is one.

To find out more, visit: www.equallywell.co.uk.

Facts and figures

  • The life expectancy of a person living with psychosis in the UK is 15-20 years shorter than average: most of this ‘gap’ is caused by poor physical health
  • People with psychosis are two to three times more likely to have diabetes than average
  • People with psychosis are two to three times more likely to have high blood pressure, heart attacks and/or strokes - cardiovascular disease.

Note: Photos courtesy of Duncan Palmer: duncanpalmer.com.