BRITS will be able to get mental health help on the high street from TODAY for just £10.
High street retailer Boots has launched the initiative as radio host Roman Kemp calls for mental health issues and medication to be 'normalised'.
The pharmacy says it has seen an uptick in patients asking for mental health advice and support in it's branches up and down the country.
In response it's launched four new services with the cheapest coming in at just £10.
The low price point could help millions of Brits who are struggling with their mental health receive help and guidance without having to wait for an NHS appointment or referral.
Radio host and TV presenter Roman Kemp has hailed the launch, after he opened up about his own mental health struggles.
The 29-year-old said he has suffered with depression and anxiety since the age of 15 and that he had only been able to come out on the other side due to therapy and anti-depressants.
Speaking at a panel he said: "I take a tablet every day and it works for me. Everyone is different.
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"Sometimes if things get hairy and I'm really stressed then I'll talk to my therapist. Everyone should try therapy in their lifetime, it doesn't do any harm."
He highlighted that a lot of men suffer with suicidal thoughts.
Every 90 minutes a life is lost to suicide in the UK, which is why The Sun previously launched the You’re Not Alone campaign to remind anyone facing a tough time, grappling with mental illness or feeling like there's nowhere left to turn, that there is hope.
Roman said that he has experienced those thoughts himself and said there has been times where he has 'been in his pant on the floor'.
"It doesn't pick and choose, it can hit you harder some days than others" he added.
Ultimately, Roman believes that the stigma around mental illness should be removed and that people should be able to access the help they need.
YOU’RE NOT ALONE
EVERY 90 minutes in the UK a life is lost to suicide
It doesn't discriminate, touching the lives of people in every corner of society – from the homeless and unemployed to builders and doctors, reality stars and footballers.
It's the biggest killer of people under the age of 35, more deadly than cancer and car crashes.
And men are three times more likely to take their own life than women.
Yet it's rarely spoken of, a taboo that threatens to continue its deadly rampage unless we all stop and take notice, now.
That is why The Sun launched the You're Not Alone campaign.
The aim is that by sharing practical advice, raising awareness and breaking down the barriers people face when talking about their mental health, we can all do our bit to help save lives.
Let's all vow to ask for help when we need it, and listen out for others… You're Not Alone.
If you, or anyone you know, needs help dealing with mental health problems, the following organisations provide support:
- CALM, www.thecalmzone.net, 0800 585 858
- Heads Together,www.headstogether.org.uk
- HUMEN www.wearehumen.org
- Mind, www.mind.org.uk, 0300 123 3393
- Papyrus, www.papyrus-uk.org, 0800 068 41 41
- Samaritans,www.samaritans.org, 116 123
In response to the need for these services, Boots has launched four different services.
The first starts at just £10 and is their How are things? Mood & Symptom checker.
HOW ARE THINGS?
The How Are Things? Mood & Symptom Checker service is an online questionnaire that asks patients questions on their mental health.
Each questionnaire is reviewed by a mental health professional who creates a bespoke report for the patient within two working days.
This report will give the patient a better understanding of what their symptoms are and recommended next steps.
These could be self-help exercises, signposting to specialist support, or alternatively signposting to private services where appropriate.
The next tier would be the 'Support Room' package, which is £40 per month and for this service patients will have to answer questions about their mental health and will be asked to select a therapist dedicated to them.
This service provides psychological and emotional therapy anytime, anywhere, and is best suited to the patient via text chat, voice notes or video call.
The Livi Taking Therapies service will also be available through the scheme and costs £65 a session.
Each week, the patient will be monitored and assessed on their progression.
At the end of the treatment plan the therapist will either recommend the patient continues treatment or can end their therapy.
The patient can continue or return to therapy at any time.
Boots Online Doctor – Depression and Anxiety treatment is also another service the pharmacy has.
People who use this service will start by completing a detailed online consultation, which is reviewed by a mental health-friendly GP or clinician within 24 hours.
Once assessed, the clinician will initiate a consultation that will take place by phone or video call at a time that suits the patient.
During the consultation, the clinician and patient will put a treatment plan together. It might include signposting to counselling, talking therapies or medication.
When it comes to mental health, it’s important that patients can access the treatments that suit them
Once the treatment has been recommended, the clinician will follow up to check how the treatment is going.
If the experts think it's appropriate then they may recommend the patient is enrolled onto a membership which costs £65-a-month.
Marc Donovan, Chief Pharmacist at Boots said that since the start of the pandemic, pharmacists noticed an increase in requests from patients for mental health services.
He added: "In response, we’re making dedicated online mental health services available to our patients, providing accessible support and helping relieve pressure on the mental health services already available through the NHS.
“The services you can now find at Boots offer a range of treatment options including talking therapy and access to prescription medicine for those who need it.
"When it comes to mental health, it’s important that patients can access the treatments that suit them.
"Mental health issues like depression and anxiety affect people differently and there is not a one-size-fits-all approach.”
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