Advances Studies Seminar – St Catherine’s College, Oxford

vbpThe Collaborating Centre for Values-based Practice in Health and Social Care is hosting an Advanced Studies Seminar on the 9th November 2016 at St Catherine’s College, Oxford.

We are pleased to announce a call for papers for the forthcoming Advanced Studies Seminar entitled “The Montgomery Ruling: Impacts on Philosophy of Medicine and Bioethics”. The seminar will be 9 November 2016 at St Catherine’s College, Oxford.

Invited speakers include Anna Bergqvist (Manchester Metropolitan University), Rob Heywood (University of East Anglia), and Tim Thornton (University of Central Lancashire).

We are hoping to gather interested scholars to discuss the philosophical issues implicit in the relatively recent Montgomery ruling and to plan future collaborative work. Given this goal, innovative or non-traditional proposals will be preferred.

Please visit for more information.

Organising Committee
Sarah Wieten
Bill Fulford

Expertise by experience

Professionals should be able to use their ‘expertise by experience’

Tina Coldham and Pete Fleischman led a workshop at the third ESRC seminar which provided an interesting historical overview of the development of co-production dating back to the dark ages in the 1980s up to the present day.  At the end, they threw out 2 questions for discussion: ‘Is it possible to truly co-produce in mental health?’ and ‘Is there a danger that co-pro will get hi-jacked?’tc

The view of the participants was that co-production is a process, a journey – there’s no alternative than to continue working away at it.  Even if co-production is being co-opted, at the very least it means that people are talking about it. Some participants explained that they witness and participate in authentic (rather than ‘watered down’) co-production – but it’s often hidden and under-acknowledged.
Significant progress will have been made when mental health professionals feel able to be open about their own experiences of mental distress. In other words, professionals also bring expertise by experience, and this should be seen as a professional asset. As things stand, most professionals feel unable to disclose their personal experience of mental health. Until they do, we won’t achieve the ideas of ‘reciprocity’ and ‘mutuality’. Although some people don’t like these words – they are the language of co-production. So look up the words if you don’t understand them!

 Tina Coldham campaigns for a better understanding of mental health issues in society and works to improve service provision. She has enduring mental health problems, and has used used mental health services over many years. Tina has worked in the voluntary sector, across disability, in academia, with regulators and governing bodies as a trainer, researcher and consultant. Tina is currently a Director with HASCAS who conduct service reviews and homicide investigations; a member of the NIHR Involve Advisory Group and Advisory Board; Honorary Visiting Fellow in the Department of Social Policy and Social Work at the University of York; An associate at the Centre for Citizenship and Community at UCLan; and has stepped down as Chair of the National Survivor User Network having led this from the project planning stage to independence. Tina also chairs the SCIE co-production network.

 Pete Fleischmann has experience of using mental health services. Pete was coordinator of Brent Mental Health User Group (BUG) from 1991 to 1996. Until 2004 Pete worked as an independent consultant. Contracts have included working with the Service User Research Enterprise (SURE) at the Institute of Psychiatry, developing user involvement at Revolving Doors Agency. Since 2004 Pete has been Head of Co-production at the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) where he works four days per week. SCIE is a national charity set up by the government in 2002 to improve social care services. Pete leads SCIE’s programme of work around co-production. Co-production is the term SCIE uses to describe working in equal partnership with people who use services, and carers. Pete is responsible for the production of good practice materials about co-production and ensuring that users and carers are at the heart of all SCIE’s work.



Support For Life

 David Crepaz-Keay sDkCpoke at the third ESRC seminar (Re-imagining professionalism in mental health: towards co-production). David was highly sceptical about the possibility of achieving co-production in mental health services. Instead, David argued that emancipatory and positive development for people in mental distress have been predominantly led by survivors – mainly people who had themselves been badly let down by the system. What is required, David argued, are different forms of support which are embedded in the context of people’s lives. Mental health should be about providing support for life (not symptom) management through community based involvement and relationships.  Peer-support is key to this. Speaking about an innovative community-based study in Wales, David explained that more referrals for peer support were received from traffic wardens and librarians than from mental health workers. More information about David’s work can be found at

 David Crepaz-Keay is Head of Empowerment and Inclusion at the Mental Health Foundation where he has worked for ten years. His goal is to create strong and effective voices for people directly affected by mental ill-health. David’s department is responsible for developing and delivering service user involvement, carer involvement, self-management and peer support, and mental health awareness training. With more than 30 years’ experience in service user involvement, David has previously occupied a number of prestigious posts including chief executive of Mental Health Media, former board member and vice-chair for the Commission for Patient and Public Involvement in Health, founding member of National Survivor User Network (NSUN), and former chair and treasurer of Survivors Speak Out.

Culture is a container for everything else

john walsh.jpg

John opened the ESRC seminar on 19 May with some insightful comments highlighting the importance of culture – ‘culture is a container for everything else’.  For John, co-production is essentially about re-distributing power in ways which create the space for people to be the best they can. Citing the late Jo Cox – ‘We have far more in common than that which divides us” – John argued that co-production requires, first and foremost, that we recognise and value our common humanity.

John Walsh is practice manager for York Street Health Practice which is the medical team for people who are homeless and in the asylum system in Leeds. John has worked there over two decades – most of that time on the streets with people who are homeless. He is also involved in national NHS work, writing with patients, staff and carers and teaching on best care and best culture, service improvement and teaching.