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Brain in Hand (BIH) is a UK-based digital self-support system for managing anxiety and social functioning.
To identify the impact of BIH on the psychological and social functioning of adults with autism.
Adults with diagnosed or suspected DSM-5 (level 1) autism, identified by seven NHS autism services in England and Wales, were recruited for a 12-week prospective mixed-methods cohort study. The primary quantitative outcome measures were the Health of the Nation Outcome Scales for People with Learning Disabilities (HONOS-LD) and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS). Fisher's exact test explored sociodemographic associations. Paired t-test was utilised for pre–post analysis of overall effectiveness of BIH. Multivariable linear regression models, univariable pre–post analysis, Wilcoxon signed-rank test, logistic regression analysis, Bonferroni correction and normative analysis were used to give confidence in changes identified. A thematic analysis of semi-structured exist interviews following Braun and Clarke's six-step process of 10% of participants who completed the study was undertaken.
Sixty-six of 99 participants completed the study. There was significant reduction in mean HONOS-LD scores, with 0.65 s.d. decrease in those who used BIH for 12 weeks. Significant positive changes were identified in HONOS-LD subdomains of ‘self-injurious behaviours’, ‘memory and orientation’, ‘communication problems in understanding’, ‘occupation and activities’ and ‘problems with relationship’. A significant reduction in the anxiety, but not depression, component of the HADS scores was identified. Thematic analysis showed high confidence in BIH.
BIH improved anxiety and other clinical, social and functioning outcomes of adults with autism.
Many male prisoners have significant mental health problems, including anxiety and depression. High proportions struggle with homelessness and substance misuse.
This study aims to evaluate whether the Engager intervention improves mental health outcomes following release.
The design is a parallel randomised superiority trial that was conducted in the North West and South West of England (ISRCTN11707331). Men serving a prison sentence of 2 years or less were individually allocated 1:1 to either the intervention (Engager plus usual care) or usual care alone. Engager included psychological and practical support in prison, on release and for 3–5 months in the community. The primary outcome was the Clinical Outcomes in Routine Evaluation Outcome Measure (CORE-OM), 6 months after release. Primary analysis compared groups based on intention-to-treat (ITT).
In total, 280 men were randomised out of the 396 who were potentially eligible and agreed to participate; 105 did not meet the mental health inclusion criteria. There was no mean difference in the ITT complete case analysis between groups (92 in each arm) for change in the CORE-OM score (1.1, 95% CI –1.1 to 3.2, P = 0.325) or secondary analyses. There were no consistent clinically significant between-group differences for secondary outcomes. Full delivery was not achieved, with 77% (108/140) receiving community-based contact.
Engager is the first trial of a collaborative care intervention adapted for prison leavers. The intervention was not shown to be effective using standard outcome measures. Further testing of different support strategies for prison with mental health problems is needed.
Loneliness and physical activity are important targets for research into the impact of COVID-19 because they have established links with mental health, could be exacerbated by social distancing policies, and are potentially modifiable. In this study, we aimed to identify whether loneliness and physical activity were associated with worse mental health during a period of mandatory social distancing in the UK.
Population-based observational cohort study.
Mental health data collected online during COVID-19 from an existing sample of adults aged 50 and over taking part in a longitudinal study of aging. All had comparable annual data collected between 2015 and 2019.
Three-thousand two-hundred and eighty-one participants aged 50 and over.
Trajectories of depression (measured by PHQ-9) and anxiety (measured by GAD-7) between 2015 and 2020 were analyzed with respect to loneliness, physical activity levels, and a number of socioeconomic and demographic characteristics using zero-inflated negative binomial regression.
In 2020, PHQ-9 score for loneliness, adjusted for covariates, was 3.23 (95% CI: 3.01–3.44), an increase of around 1 point on all previous years in this group and 2 points higher than people not rated lonely, whose score did not change in 2020 (1.22, 95% CI: 1.12–1.32). PHQ-9 was 2.60 (95% CI: 2.43–2.78) in people with decreased physical activity, an increase of .5 on previous years. In contrast, PHQ-9 in 2020 for people whose physical activity had not decreased was 1.66, 95% CI: 1.56−1.75, similar to previous years. A similar relationship was observed for GAD-7 though the absolute burden of symptoms lower.
After accounting for pre-COVID-19 trends, we show that experiencing loneliness and decreased physical activity are risk factors for worsening mental health during the pandemic. Our findings highlight the need to examine policies which target these potentially modifiable risk factors.
Rapid spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has affected people with intellectual disability disproportionately. Existing data does not provide enough information to understand factors associated with increased deaths in those with intellectual disability. Establishing who is at high risk is important in developing prevention strategies, given risk factors or comorbidities in people with intellectual disability may be different to those in the general population.
To identify comorbidities, demographic and clinical factors of those individuals with intellectual disability who have died from COVID-19.
An observational descriptive case series looking at deaths because of COVID-19 in people with intellectual disability was conducted. Along with established risk factors observed in the general population, possible specific risk factors and comorbidities in people with intellectual disability for deaths related to COVID-19 were examined. Comparisons between mild and moderate-to-profound intellectual disability subcohorts were undertaken.
Data on 66 deaths in individuals with intellectual disability were analysed. This group was younger (mean age 64 years) compared with the age of death in the general population because of COVID-19. High rates of moderate-to-profound intellectual disability (n = 43), epilepsy (n = 29), mental illness (n = 29), dysphagia (n = 23), Down syndrome (n = 20) and dementia (n = 15) were observed.
This is the first study exploring associations between possible risk factors and comorbidities found in COVID-19 deaths in people with intellectual disability. Our data provides insight into possible factors for deaths in people with intellectual disability. Some of the factors varied between the mild and moderate-to-profound intellectual disability groups. This highlights an urgent need for further systemic inquiry and study of the possible cumulative impact of these factors and comorbidities given the possibility of COVID-19 resurgence.
The aim was to understand the processes of therapeutic changes in Meaning-Centered Group Psychotherapy (MCGP) in a Portuguese sample.
Adult cancer patients with distress motivated to participate in MCGP were identified; descriptive and narrative analyses were performed on the session content.
The sample had 24 participants (mean age: 63.43 years); the majority were females (75%), with a median academic degree (54%). Breast cancer was most frequent (67%) at the localized stage (71%). The narrative analysis defined seven categories according to the MCGP themes. In “Moments with Meaning (MwM),” the most relevant dimensions were related to interpersonal relations, the moment of diagnosis, and personal achievements. This category established relations with almost all other categories, as did the category “historical sources of meaning (SoM).” The category “identity before and after cancer diagnosis” was only related to “attitudinal SoM” and “transitions.” Historical SoM had two dimensions, “past” and “present and future” legacies, in which prominent topics related to family, childhood, achieved goals, and values to pass to others explored. Attitudinal SoM established relations only with the category “creative SoM,” in which “courage” and “responsibility” were the main dimensions, which were also related to “MwM,” “historical,” and “attitudinal SoM.” Experiential SoM, with the main dimension “love,” was related to “MwM” and “historical SoM.” Transitions only established relations with “historical SoM” and “identity before and after cancer.”
Significance of results
The findings that “MwM” and “historical SoM” were the categories which established a solid pattern of relations suggest that these are the main psychotherapy topics that can have more influence for the participants; one explanation is that these categories imply a concrete way of thinking, which is easier to understand. This process of therapeutic changes must be integrated in a cultural context, as it is well known to have an impact upon the “meaning” of life.
Public health strategies have focused largely on physical health. However, there is increasing recognition that raising mental health awareness and tackling stigma is crucial to reduce disease burden. National campaigns have had some success but tackling issues locally is particularly important.
To assess the public's awareness and perception of the monthly BBC Cornwall mental health phone-in programmes that have run for 8.5 years in Cornwall, UK (population 530 000).
A consultation, review and feedback process involving a multiagency forum of mental and public health professionals, people with lived experience and local National Health Service trust's media team was used to develop a brief questionnaire. This was offered to all attendees at two local pharmacies covering populations of 27 000 over a 2-week period.
In total, 14% (95% CI 11.9–16.5) were aware of the radio show, 11% (95% CI 9.0–13.1) have listened and the majority (76%) of those who listened did so more than once. The estimated reach is 70 000 people in the local population, of whom approximately 60 000 listen regularly. The show is highly valued among respondents with modal and median scores of 4 out of 5.
Local radio is a successful, cost-effective and impactful way to reach a significant proportion of the population and likely to raise awareness, reduce stigma and be well received. The format has been adopted in other regions thus demonstrating easy transferability. It could form an essential part of a public health strategy to improve a population's mental well-being.
Declaration of interest
W.H. received support from the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care (CLAHRC) for the South West Peninsula UK. The views expressed in this publication are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the NHS, the NIHR or the Department of Health. L.R. and D.S. were involved in delivering the programmes but had no role in their evaluation.
There is limited research that explores the association between exclusion from school and mental health, but it seems intuitively plausible that the recognition of mental difficulties by key teachers and parents would influence the likelihood of exclusion from school.
A secondary analysis of the British Child and Adolescent Mental Health survey 2004, (n = 7997) and the 2007 follow-up (n = 5326) was conducted. Recognition of difficulty was assessed via a derived variable that combined the first item of the Impact supplement of the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire which asked parents and teachers if they thought that the child has difficulties with emotions, behaviour and concentration, and the presence/absence of psychiatric disorder measured by the Development and Well-being Assessment.
Adjusted logistic regression models demonstrated that children with recognised difficulties were more likely to be excluded [adjusted odds ratio (OR) 5.78, confidence interval 3.45–9.64, p < 0.001], but children with unrecognised difficulties [adjusted OR 3.58 (1.46–8.81) p < 0.005] or recognised subclinical difficulties [adjusted OR 3.42 (2.04–5.73) p < 0.001] were also more likely to be excluded than children with no difficulties. Children with conduct disorder and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder were most likely to be excluded compared with other types of disorder.
Exclusion from school may result from a failure to provide timely and effective support rather than a failure to recognise psychopathology.
The essays here consider a broad range of topics drawn from the early to central Middle Ages. These include a fascinating glimpse of the controversy surrounding Theodoric of Ostrogoth's identity as a builder king; evidence of Byzantine slavery that emerges from a ninth-century Frankish exegetical tract; conciliar prohibitions against interfaith dining; and a fresh look at the doomed Danish marriage of Philip II of France. The Journal's commitment to source analysis is continued with chapters examining female authority on the coins of Henry the Lion; the use and meaning of monastic depredation lists; and the relationship between Henry of Huntingdon and Robert of Torigni. Finally, the volume offers a truly rich set of explorations of the political and historiographical dynamics between England and Wales from the tenth century through the late Middle Ages. This volume also contains the Henry Loyn Memorial Lecture for 2008.
Contributors: Shane Bobrycki, Gregory I. Halfond, Thomas Heeboll-Holm, Georgia Henley, Jitske Jasperse, Simon Keynes, Maria Cristina La Rocca, Corinna Matlis, Benjamin Pohl, Thomas Roche, Owain Wyn Jones