The British Association of Dermatologists (BAD) has launched an online psychological support service for people who suffer from various skin conditions.
Skin Support, which was awarded a three-year grant by The Department of Health Innovation, Excellence & Strategic Development Fund, provides links and information on self-help, support groups and patient information leaflets.
Dr David Edey, president of the BAD said of the support website, “The problem is that finding self-help materials can be difficult – patients don’t know where to look and resources are available across so many different websites. The beauty of the Skin Support website is that it brings together lots of content in one easy to navigate place, and it tailors the materials to people’s individual skin disease and any physical impairment this may involve.”
According to the BAD, skin conditions are the most frequent complaint recorded by GPs, and psoriasis alone is linked to 300 suicide attempts annually. ?
Dr Andrew Thompson, a member of the advisory panel associated with the development of the website said, “Skin conditions can have a significant psychological impact on people and it is well acknowledged that access to psychological intervention and even to good quality evidence based self-help is limited. Consequently the Skin Support project is an important development as it is unique in providing people with skin conditions with information about emotional and social issues associated with dermatological conditions.”
He continued, “People visiting the site can also download self-help materials that have been written by qualified clinicians, such as myself, and have been either tested in the NHS or in research. We also hope that the site will encourage people to seek further help from their GP or Dermatologist if needed.”