Belfast Health

‘Have Your Say Belfast’
Emotional Health & Wellbeing in Belfast
Part 1:   (1100 words – should be 900)
The public health intervention I am proposing involves carrying out a Belfast-wide questionnaire to ascertain how people rate their own mental health and wellbeing and what steps can be taken to improve their lives and that of their family.   A process such as this has never been done before in Belfast, but the need to review current service delivery is a case that cannot be ignored any longer.   In this economic climate with purse strings tightening, how we spend what money we do have is ever more important.   By carrying out this ‘upstream’ intervention (Core Text p29) I believe that health practitioners will be better informed and better able to direct available resources to those that need assistance the most.   The questionnaire in essence will act as the ‘glue’ that sticks everything together in the right place.
My reason for choosing this intervention is based on quantitative data which shows Belfast urgently needs a ‘positive mental health’ intervention.
Belfast is the capital city of Northern Ireland and it has a population of 280,962 according to Census 2011 figures.   The city is broadly divided into 4 quarters (based along Westminster parliamentary boundaries) North, South, West and East Belfast.                             Anecdotally it is estimated that the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust receives 20,000 referrals per year for mental health services.
Suicide levels according to the Northern Ireland Statistical Research Agency (NISRA) across Northern Ireland have risen dramatically in recent years with Belfast recording very high levels year on year. In 2010 there were 313 suicides with the highest figure being recorded in North Belfast.
Substantial health inequalities exist across the city.   For example a man will live 4 years longer if he lives in the more ‘affluent’ part of the city such as South Belfast compared to West Belfast (Dr...