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Breaking down stigma during Schizophrenia Awareness Week

23 May 2018

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During Schizophrenia Awareness Week, Darling Downs Hospital and Health Service staff are hoping to break down the stigma associated with the mental illness.

The nation-wide, awareness-raising week will be held from 20 to 27 May, 2018.

Mental Health Advanced Social Worker Judith Van Den Brink said this year’s event was themed "Do What You Can Do".

"The theme challenges the myths around a diagnosis of schizophrenia and to provide factual information to reduce the negative stigma of the condition," Ms Van Den Brink said.

"People are encouraged to take the ‘Do What You Can Do’ quiz to find out their assumptions and knowledge about the condition."

Schizophrenia is a medical condition which effects the normal functioning of the brain. It impacts a person’s ability to think, feel and act. In some people, symptoms improve over time leading to complete recovery, however for many, it is a prolonged illness.

"Negative stigma is a big problem for people with mental illness," Ms Van Den Brink said.

"This negative attitude often means that people with a mental illness face isolation and discrimination just for having an illness.

"By adopting a positive attitude toward people with a mental illness, family, friends, employers and other members of the community can offer hope for a better quality of life."

For more information about schizophrenia or to take the quiz visit http://www.dowhatyoucando.com.au/

DDHHS staff will host an information display at Toowoomba Plaza, Ruthven Street on Thursday 31 May from 11am to 2pm.

If you have concerns about your mental health contact your General Practitioner or phone 1300 MH CALL (1300 64 22 55).

Last updated: 31 May 2018