Seeking help in times of economic hardship: access, experiences of services and unmet need

Increased levels of psychological distress and suicidal behavior were observed in light of the 2008/2009 economic recession. Little is known, however, about the experiences of those seeking help. Dr. Barnes talks to us about her research, published today in BMC Psychiatry, in this latest BioMed Central podcast.

Interviews were conducted with three different groups of people, those who had self-harmed due to employment, financial or benefit concerns, those struggling financially and frontline staff from voluntary and statutory sector organisations.

Dr. Barnes and her team discovered that most people found service provision confusing and difficult to access. In addition, benefit sanctions and preexisting mental health problems played a large role and many had the expectation that they should be self-reliant.

This study concludes that interventions are required to identify those in need so that they have guidance and access to practical and reliable advice. Listen to more in this podcast:

 

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