Perception of ECT

Ect facilities pic 1

NCMD asked psychiatrists what they thought about ECT. They said it was “effective”, “life saving”, and “I’d have it”. Members of the public (people who were walking on the Waggon Way around Newburn) had a different view. Many said that it caused “memory loss”, was “barbaric” and “old-fashioned”, and “I wouldn’t want it for myself”. Others said things like “my dad had it” and were then more positive (“gets you out of a dark place” and “amazing transformation”). We realised that those people who were exposed to ECT were positive about it whereas those who hadn’t were wary. This is important because ECT is a remarkably effective treatment for depression and that stigma surrounding it means that some people aren’t having it when they probably should. As part of the Pint of Science event we therefore talked about ECT. At the start of the evening, the audience said it was a “Brutal” and “Scary” treatment of “Last Resort”. However, after Nicol had finished talking, the audience said it was “underused” and “effective”.