Talking to someone you are worried about
About sharing image copyrightGetty Images The pressures on mental health services are well documented. But what is it like to try to negotiate the system to get the help you need? Figures revealed on Friday by fimding BBC show the flagship mental health Improving Access to Psychological Therapies service fails more people than it helps in one in seven areas of England.
We spoke to two people with very different experiences of "navigating the system" and accessing mental health services. Her experience of accessing mental health care has been overwhelmingly positive. In January I did attempt suicide," she says.
Talking to someone you are worried about - beyond blue
Karla, who lives in Derby, adds: "I got CBT cognitive behavioural therapy really quickly, within a couple of weeks. And in that time, I was seeing my GP pretty much every day. He made time to make sure I was OK. I was really fortunate to have a GP who took the time.
The access can be such a problem. I'm officially in recovery from depression and anxiety.
I'm in a far better place. Now I don't bottle things up so much. Before, I didn't talk to anyone. Therapy taught me to accept this is what it is.
I am not. I get up every morning in chronic pain - sometimes getting up and getting dressed is a challenge. It's saved my life. Findihg that time, he has had contact with a wide range of professionals - his GP, social workers and housing support staff - which "didn't amount to anything". He was also referred to a psychiatrist, and later CBT.
Find someone to talk to | parkinson's foundation
None of it has worked for him, and he says it can be hard to negotiate "the system" when you are also dealing with symptoms. It's really hard. You feel lonely and isolated.
And if something fails, you're in limbo. There needs to be a better way. Unfortunately, your likelihood of receiving the help you need can still vary depending on where you live, and this needs to change, urgently. It's awful that so many people are struggling to access the support they need from their GPs when they need it. We know that there are many barriers to people seeking help from their GP in the first place, but on top of this we are concerned that problems with booking appointments may deter people further.
Advocates can be provided by a of organisations, including local Mind branches.