If your loved one accesses services for support, it can be helpful to learn more about the people in involved in their care and the plan for care and recovery.

You may want to ask for the following information:

  • The contact details of relevant senior management and staff members involved in treatment and care of your loved one.

  • Who to contact if you have concerns, and what kind of response you should expect to receive.

  • The relevant supports and services available, including voluntary organisations working in the area. You can search for local supports and services here.

  • The mission statement of the service or services you access for support.

  • The assistance and support services available for when you have difficulties caring for, or supporting, your loved one.

  • All members of the care and recovery team, and a description of their roles, their titles and a contact number.

  • The mechanisms and systems for complaints and how the complaints will be dealt with by the service.

  • If your loved one is an in-patient: any proposed discharge plan that includes or requires any input from you (including plans for accommodation).

  •  Information on the journey to recovery.  

  • Information on the different approaches to support and to the alternative understandings of mental health.

  • Any other information specifically relevant to carers.

In addition, family, friends and carers should:

  • Receive a mental health service that encourages families to take part in service planning, implementation and evaluation. The service should also recognise that service users and their families are experts because of their experience.

  • Be encouraged to take “time out” when required, and to be supported in this as appropriate to their needs.

More information:

HSE.ie provides information on communicating effectively with health care professionals and information on health services.

Content provided by Shine and adapted for YourMentalHealth.ie by the National Office for Suicide Prevention. Find out more about our content partnerships