"Lack of help at NHS Haringey St Anne's Hospital "

About: Barnet, Enfield And Haringey Mental Health NHS Trust / Adult mental health

(as the patient),

I presented to the crisis unit with suicidal ideation having had long term depression. Basically I want to die every day and living is hell. I was seen after a 3 hour wait despite visibly and repeatedly breaking down in front of total strangers in reception. This was also despite 6 or 7 members of staff chatting merrily away in the reception office about social matters.

Eventually I was seen by an 'assessor' who spent 50 mins with me taking notes about how I felt like I wanted to kill myself. Finally he told me that my case would be discussed and assessed for treatment the following week. When I called the following week, I was told the meeting had to be cut short and it wasn't discussed but would definitely be the following week. When I called again, they again said they hadn't gotten round to it.

I was now in full crisis having had a breakdown at work. Finally they called me to say that I wouldn't be offered treatment as I'd been offered treatment in the past and turned it down. I hadn't, and tried to tell them their records were wrong. I had to threaten to take it to the Chief Exec before they admitted their mistake and referred me to the Complex Care team. The earliest appointment they said they could give was 4 months away.

In that 4 months, I've lost my job, am about to lose my home. I finally had my appointment today which was yet another assessment (my 5th in total). I've been placed on a waiting list for therapy. I've been told it will be another 6 months.

I don't know what to do. I don't know how to cope for 6 months. I'm so angry at the NHS. The Mental Health team at St Anne's are apparently set up for the benefit of the staff and not the patients. In my view, they have little or no understanding of mental health - for example, if you miss an appointment, they assume its because you no longer need treatment, not that your mental illness may prevent you leaving the house.

They've extinguished the little hope I had. But nothing will change because mental health patients aren't taken seriously even by the people who are supposed to help. I hope I survive this depression long enough to see to it that NHS Haringey is named and shamed for being the hellhole it is.

No wonder so many awful tragedies play out with these people. I feel that they are a disgrace to their profession

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