In 2015 Mental Health Week runs from 4th to 10th October with World Mental Health Day occurring on Saturday 10th October, and the Pharmacists’ Support Service is encouraging pharmacists to look after themselves as well as their patients.
The Service is highlighting that mental health is not just the absence of mental illness: it is defined as a state of well-being in which every individual realises his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.
“As pharmacists we are not always good at taking our own advice and we often omit to attend to our own health and well-being, says PSS president John Coppock.
“In the current pharmacy environment we must all take steps to maintain our mental health by managing stress through a healthy lifestyle including regular exercise; a healthy diet; adequate sleep and ensuring sufficient time for relaxation and pleasurable activities with our friends and loved ones.”
The Pharmacists’ Support Service is a service which focuses on the mental health of Australian pharmacists, interns and pharmacy students.
PSS is accessible by phone and can help pharmacists who are are stressed, are concerned about their mental health or just need a listening ear.
The PSS telephone is answered by experienced pharmacist volunteers who have undertaken training in crisis support counselling. Anonymous and discreet support is available on 1300 244 910 between 8.00 am and 11.00 pm (EST) every day of the year.
On average two or three pharmacists phone PSS every week seeking support over the phone.
Coppock also invites all pharmacists to consider giving a donation to PSS during Mental Health Week.
“PSS is a service set up for the pharmacy profession by the pharmacy profession and a tax deductible donation is an investment in the mental health of the pharmacy profession,” he says.
Donations to PSS can easily be made using a credit card via the Donate Now button on the PSS website at www.supportforpharmacists.org.au. Another option for donation is by direct deposit into the PSS bank account BSB 083170 account number 145988064 with an email to firstname.lastname@example.org detailing name and contact details so that a receipt can be issued.