Trending on Twitter in recent times has been the hashtag #ChoosePsychiatry.
It’s linked to a carefully-constructed campaign that the Royal College of Psychiatrists devised in order to shine a light on the specialism and persuade more doctors to do just that: To choose Psychiatry.
It’s something that got us thinking.
Thinking about our own background(s). Thinking about our choices. Thinking about mental health’s advance to the medical frontline. Thinking about Psychiatry’s increasing importance.
It’s something that was on our minds when we set about commissioning and producing a new series of short films designed to showcase our services and the help and support that our team offer.
In introducing Dr Stephen Westgarth, CPUK’s medical director, we found ourselves asking a question that took us back to the aforementioned hashtag.
Indeed, we chose Psychiatry. But why?
It’s a question that Dr Westgarth will answer in full in our first film, looking back upon an interest in mental health that dates back to 1990, before he graduated from Medical School in Newcastle-upon-Tyne. From joining the Royal College to undertaking a post-graduate diploma in CBT at Durham to, ultimately, founding CPUK, it has been a career progression both rewarding and fulfilling in its nature.
Having worked under some ‘inspirational consultants’, Dr Westgarth admits: ‘I loved it [and] thought ‘I have to change direction’ and from that point I dedicated myself to Psychiatry.’
For anyone considering their career path – or indeed, for anyone who might need our help, support and/or advice – it’s our hope that this might prove useful.
For those yet to watch – or indeed, for those who have just viewed our first video (and further instalments are in the pipeline) – we’d like to underline and repeat Dr Westgarth’s closing words, because these are at the matter’s crux.
The reason we decided to choose Psychiatry. The reason that mental health – and being able to access the appropriate support – is so important (in the modern world perhaps more than ever before).
‘It’s so important to people’s well-being that they have good mental health. If you have a broken leg, you can still be happy or sad and it doesn’t necessarily alter your view of the world. But with a mental illness it can have a profound effect on your well-being.
‘It’s a cliché to some, but there’s no health without mental health, and I think that is absolutely true. It’s a fundamental part of our existence having good mental health.
‘It’s a key part of being a doctor, being able to help people with that.’
In a nutshell, that’s it: to help; to provide support fundamental to well-being; to underline, cliché or not, that there is no health without mental health . . .
That’s our reason to #ChoosePsychiatry.