How does a mental health diagnosis affect how others see you?
Hi, my name is Mia! I am a trainee clinical psychologist at the University of Bath. I am inviting you to take part in a piece of research to help us understand what affects how comfortable someone feels with telling others about their mental health diagnosis.
However, before you decide, it’s important for you to understand why the study is being done and what it’ll involve. Please take time to read the following information carefully and discuss it with others if you wish.
Why are we doing this research?
Some research suggests that being able to tell others about your mental health diagnosis can be good for your wellbeing, but it can be quite difficult for some people to do. One way of helping others in the future is to understand why this might be.
One thing that might make it more difficult is the way we think others’ think about us, but this will be the first study to research this!
You will be asked to think about and discuss a person you know who you would like to tell your diagnosis to (who you have not told already). Following this, you will be asked to answer some questionnaires that will help show how this has made you feel. You will be asked to do this for either a person who thinks about mental health positively or a person who thinks about mental health negatively.
You will also be asked some simple questions about you (e.g. age, gender, diagnosis) and complete a wellbeing questionnaire. At the end, you can then do a mindfulness exercise if you like. Once this is finished, you will be given further information about the study and you can ask any further questions you might have.
Why am I being invited?
People with all kinds of mental health diagnoses can find it difficult to tell others about their diagnosis. As a person with a mental health diagnosis, your thoughts and feelings about this are important to help us understand what makes this easier.
You are being invited because you have either expressed interest in participating, or have been identified by someone involved in your care as a person with a mental health diagnosis. However, if you are currently very unwell, you may not be able to take part – you can discuss this with me if this is the case.
When and where?
If you agree to take part it will involve meeting with me for between 30-40 minutes at either: the University of Bath, a clinic room at the service that provides your care, or your home. The exact date, time and location will depend on our availability.
Will I receive any payment?
Yes, you will receive a £5 gift voucher as a ‘thank you’ after taking part. If travelling to the university, we may be able to offer travel expenses.
What are the possible benefits of taking part?
By taking part, you could help to contribute to what we know about telling others about your mental health diagnosis. It might also help other research to take place in the area. This could be really beneficial in the future! A brief mindfulness exercise will be used at the end of the project. You may find this a helpful exercise to learn.
You can find out about study results if you want. To do this, I will keep your name and email address on a password-protected device. Results should be available between May-September 2018.
Are there possible disadvantages and risks of taking part?
There shouldn’t be many disadvantages. However, you might find it difficult to imagine telling people about your diagnosis. If this happens you can stop at any point or choose not to answer a question. You will be also provided with contact information for organisations that may be able to provide support at the end if you do feel distressed.
What will happen if I don't want to carry on with the study?
A decision to take part, to withdraw at any time, or not to take part will not affect any treatment you’re currently receiving or will receive in the future. If you decide to take part you are still free to withdraw at any time without giving a reason. You can also request any data already collected to be withdrawn from my write-up.
What if there is a problem?
It is hoped you feel satisfied and safe throughout the project. However, if you have any concerns or wish to complain about any aspect of this project, you should let me know and I will do my best to help. If this is unhelpful, you could contact the project supervisors, Lorna Hogg (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Dr Laura Bocci (email@example.com). If you remain unhappy and wish to complain, you can do this by contacting, the University of Bath Secretary Mark Humphriss on 01225 286212 or firstname.lastname@example.org. The University of Bath, as Sponsor of the study, has indemnity (insurance) arrangements in place. Every care will be taken to ensure your wellbeing during the course of this project.
How is information kept confidential?
Your name will be removed from your results, so you cannot be identified. You will be given a number, which only people involved in the study will know. Your consent form will be kept in a separate, locked container so they can’t be linked.
All information collected about you will be kept confidential and conform to relevant requirements. This means all paper-based information will be locked away and all electronic information will be password protected, with access restricted to people involved in the study.
Personal identifiable data will be kept until the study ends, in case you want to withdraw your results. Anonymised data will be kept and securely destroyed after 5 years, consistent with Good Practice Guidelines for the conduct of research in the NHS. The Research Governance Sponsor of this study, the University of Bath, may monitor or audit this study to ensure that it is being conducted properly but your identity will not be revealed.
There is one exception when I can’t guarantee confidentiality... as an NHS employee it’s my duty to inform public services (e.g. your GP, Care Coordinator (if applicable), Social Services, the police) if you tell me anything that indicates that you or someone else is at risk, or there has been criminal activity or professional malpractice. I will try to let you know if I think I need to do this.
Thank you for taking the time to read this information. Please then take time to decide whether or not you wish to take part.
If you have decided you would like to take part, you can carry on to the consent form on the next page. If you want to get in touch for any other reason, please email my work address: email@example.com