Full and open conversations about medication is a top priority for Equally Well. At the point of prescribing, and regularly throughout the care pathway, GPs and people using services should be having client-centred conversations about the effects of psychotropic medications, what can be done to mitigate the unwanted effects, and medication withdrawal.

The Equally Well collaborative has called for more information and guidance to support these conversations between GPs and people using services. This was identified in discussions at the Equally Well summit and in our online Loomio group.

“I know lots of people like me who do need medication to be able to work and manage life. We don’t want to create stigma or sense of failure around using medication. What we need is a wide range of options and clear information on how a medication could impact on our physical health.”   

Comment from a Loomio member

An Equally Well partners group recently got together to initiate the development of a recovery focused prescribing toolkit. The group consisted of people with lived experience and representatives from the Royal Australasian College of Psychiatrists, the NZ College of GPs, Te Ao Māramatanga NZ College of Mental Health Nursing, the mental health special interest group of the Pharmaceutical Society, Te Pou o te Whakaaro Nui and Matua Raki. The toolkit will be designed mainly for prescribers, and will include a range of resources including video. If you want to get more involved in this work, join the discussion on Loomio (contact Wendy Donaldson to join Loomio).