New research shows that around one million people in the UK are effected by Bipolar Disorder with myself being included within that statistic. With mental health now being at the forefront of many awareness health campaigns it’s important that we are able to highlight individual projects like today, Bipolar Disorder awareness day, especially when such a large amount of individuals are effected. The mood instability illness isn’t a new diagnosis with first medical notes on mania and melancholy dating back to the the 1st Century in Greece and is documented throughout history.
So when I found out that in 2016 there is a lack of research into the illness here in the UK I was disappointingly surprised. At current, in the UK, mental health receives just under 6% of all health research funding and within that small percentage of funds only approximately 1.6% goes towards research into Bipolar. In terms of actual money it means that on average only 16 pence per individual is spent on those effected.
16p. I can’t even buy a pint of milk with that little money.
Why as a society is it more acceptable that every member of parliament has a budget of £9000 for stationery and postage stamps (2015/2016) than to allow a higher budget to be passed onto the Bipolar Disorder research teams. The cost of ONE 1st class stamp (64p) is equivalent to the current spending on research of four individuals with the illness.
It’s hard to acknowledge that in a time of modern medical advancements that the life long mental illness that can so quickly make my own life and so many others so challenging doesn’t seem to be a high priority for government funding. With the need for further research it’s imperative that things need to change.
This is why the charity Bipolar UK are launching a petition for more funding for research. The mental illness is of course complex but with more investigations and research funded medical and care professional will have access to greater knowledge into the way our minds work, new treatments could be found and our Doctors will be able to treat patients more effectively. By having more funding and research we ultimately raise understanding and awareness. The ripple effect of awareness means that we start to breakdown the stigma and misconceptions about living with Bipolar Disorder.
For more information please click here
Please sign and share the petition