Social isolation a cruel ‘companion’ for those with a psychotic illness

Australian Greens spokesperson for Mental Health, Senator Penny Wright, has highlighted the challenges faced by people living with a psychotic illness during a speech in the Senate last night.

“Every year, about one in 200 people experience psychotic illness,” Senator Wright said.

“Late last year, the most comprehensive study of its kind ever undertaken in Australia identified social isolation as the cruellest aspect of life faced by many people living with a psychotic illness.

“Nearly a quarter of those in the study reported feeling socially isolated and lonely.

“One in eight reported they had no friends at all.

“Along with the stigma still surrounding psychotic illness, this means people living with a mental illness often are deprived of meaningful relationships that are so vital to life.

“Not only is there an urgent need for continuing improvement in services and treatment, but also an understanding and awareness of psychotic illness in the general population.

“I look forward to the day when the description "psychotic" does not evoke alarmist and inaccurate Hitchcockian images but rather understanding and acceptance and an outstretched hand,” Senator Wright said.

For more information:

People living with a psychotic illness report

People living with a psychotic illness: A SANE response