The Health Services of the UK are understaffed in many (all?) areas. Nurses, Psychologists, Counsellors, Radiographers are considering their positions… Some may move abroad.. Rationing by deliberate undercapacity and restricting their income drives staff into the private world, or abroad.
The NHS is increasingly turning to electroconvulsive therapy to treat patients with serious mental health problems.
In 2015-16, 22,600 ECT treatments were carried out, a rise of 11 per cent from the 20,400 in 2012-13. The number of patients treated also rose — to more than 2,200 — as did the average number of treatments per patient, from 9.6 in 2012-13 to 10.1 in 2015-16. The data, obtained by The Guardian, covers 44 NHS health trusts in England.
“I think [ECT] should be on the increase because it has been underused for years,” Tim Oakley, of the ECT Accreditation Service and a clinical director at the Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS trust, told the newspaper. “There are some patients who would respond very well to ECT who perhaps don’t get it as quickly as they should or don’t get it at all for various reasons. In terms of getting people better, particularly for depression where everything else fails, it is still the best treatment.”
A 2014/15 survey of patients found that 91.5 per cent improved after treatment and 1.7 per cent became worse. However, Mind, the mental health charity, warns that the therapy, which involves passing electricity through the brain, can have side effects including memory loss, poor concentration and dizziness. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence advises that it should be used as a last resort.