Film premier highlights additional support for local carers

Posted on 14th December, 2012

Carers, patients and healthcare staff from across Torbay and Southern Devon recently came together to celebrate the launch of a new educational film to help families supporting an older person suffering from depression, anxiety or psychosis. Funded and produced in collaboration between Torbay and Southern Devon Health and Care NHS Trust’s Torbay Carers Services and Devon Partnership NHS Trust, the film is the third in a series of DVDs aimed at supporting unpaid carers. Caring for an Older Person with Depression, Anxiety or Psychosis follows on from two highly successful films about dementia. The films share the experience of living with, and caring for, someone with mental ill health and explore the ways in which people learn to cope with the challenges involved. This latest film features four couples who have lived with depression, anxiety or a psychotic illness. They openly discuss what happened to them, the effect of their illness on their daily lives and relationships and how they have come through their struggles with ill health. Carers talk about the effect on the person with the illness and on themselves.  James Drummond, Carers Services Lead at Torbay and Southern Devon Health and Care NHS Trust said: “We know that mental health problems still carry a stigma which can make people reluctant to talk about them openly. What the people in the film demonstrate is how important it is to ask for support and, very importantly, for carers to look after their own health and wellbeing too. “The film gives practical advice and shows clinicians, patients and their carers focusing on recovery and positive change. It really is an inspirational film and one that we hope will help many unpaid carers in Torbay and South Devon.”
Dr David Somerfield, Medical Director at Devon Partnership NHS Trust and a Consultant Psychiatrist working with older people, scripted the film and co-presents it.  He said: “People and their carers often develop a great deal of expertise around their illness and we would like to thank all those who gave their time to talk about their experience for the considerable benefit of others.  "Supporting someone with anxiety, depression or psychosis can be a stressful and sometimes frightening experience. Carers can often feel a sense of despair about the prospect of their loved one never returning to a live a 'normal' life and can also feel helpless - not knowing what to do for the best. Through this DVD we have worked with people who have recovered with the support of their carers and we hope that their stories will give comfort, hope and practical support to others.” Copies of the film are available to buy. For more information or to purchase your copy, please contact James Drummond 01803 219783 or email For more information about support services available for carers, contact Signposts for Carers on 01803 666620 or visit