Ten days ago I wrote about the tragic story of Alan Mullin who committed suicide in prison when he should have been receiving treatment for his mental illness. Today I return to mental health but this time to the lack of provision within my health board, Lothian, for those with eating disorders.
I am close to one who suffers from an eating disorder, who has been diagnosed as having an eating disorder but who must join an obscenely long waiting list for treatment at a specialist centre:
Twelve to fourteen months to reach the front of the queue.
Twelve to fourteen months after formal diagnosis before treatment.
Twelve to fourteen months without treatment.
Twelve to fourteen months to continue damaging one's body.
Twelve to fourteen months to continue to suffer the psychological problems underlying the disorder.
Twelve to fourteen months to deteriorate.
One can jump the queue by increasing one's risk factors: if one loses even more weight or shows major changes to other physical or cognitive attributes. Therefore, make oneself worse, thinner, more dangerously ill; do oneself more damage and one may get earlier treatment.
Make oneself worse to get treatment? Those with a diagnosis are already very ill. They should get treatment without the delay. They must get treatment without this delay!
That those who are so ill must wait more than one year for treatment is obscene.
Obviously, there are insufficient resources within the NHS!
But why are there insufficient resources?
Is mental health not "sexy" enough; are there not enough votes in it?
Twelve to fourteen months!!
Does no-one in power care?
Do no MSPs care?
You bloody well should care!
I AM NOT GOING AWAY!!!