Community Collective Advocacy Peer Research: Experiences of Physical Health Care and Side Effects of Psychiatric / Mental Health Medication

People often tell us about two important issues: experiences of physical health care when you have a mental health diagnosis or lived experience of mental health issues; and side effects of psychiatric medication

We are carrying out research to get these experiences down on paper, to identify any common issues and to gather your views about what needs to be done to improve the care people receive for their physical health issues and to address the issue of medication side effects.

The aim of this research isn’t to make a judgment about physical health care in Edinburgh or the pros and cons of medication.  People have different views on these issues and what we want to do is represent those views.

Please note: this is for people who live in Edinburgh and who have lived experience of mental health issues or have used mental health services.

*This is peer research – that means that people with lived experience of mental health issues have planned the research, and we have two peer researchers who both have lived experience who are working with us to carry out the research.*

How to take part

We’ve found that it can be really powerful to be able to relate people’s experiences and views in their own words.  We’ve put together two questionnaires (one for each issue) so that you can help us to do this.

You can fill in one of the questionnaires, or both, whichever is relevant for you.  There are different ways that you can fill in the questionnaires:

  • Online
  • On your computer
  • By hand
  • With the help of one of the peer researchers or an AdvoCard worker

If you would like help to fill in your form, please let us know by the end of October so we can arrange a time to meet with you.

Here are the word document copies of the questionnaires (please click on the questionnaire that you want to download):

Peer Research – Word Doc Questionnaire (Treatment and Support)

Peer Research – Word Doc Questionnaire (Side effects)

Large Print Word Doc Questionnaire (Treatment and Support)

Large Print Word Doc Questionnaire (Side effects)

These are the links which will take you to the online questionnaires –

Physical Health Support and Treatment:

Side Effects of Psychiatric / Mental Health Medication:

This information sheet will tell you more about filling in the questionnaire online:  

Peer Research Information Sheet – Online 

Large Print Information Sheet – Online Questionnaire 

The deadline for filling in the questionnaire online or sending us your completed questionnaire is end of day, Monday 19th November.

If you would like us to send you a printed copy of the questionnaire, would like help to fill in the questionnaire or have any questions, please contact Becky – [email protected], 0131 554 5307.


Volunteer with AdvoCard

AdvoCard will be running our 8 week training course this September for potential Volunteer Advocacy Workers. This consists of 2 full Saturdays and 6 Wednesday evenings 6-9pm. We are looking for people with a non-judgmental attitude and an open mind. You need to have availability to attend appointments here with people at Leith Walk and also be available to conduct home visits across Edinburgh with people who are unable to leave their homes; home visits are always conducted with two volunteers. We also need volunteers to have availability a couple of times a week at least for between 2-4 hours per week (or more if possible.)

You can apply through our website

If you want to discuss things further, please phone Paul the Volunteer Coordinator at AdvoCard here on 0131 554 5307 and he will be happy to have a chat with you or you can pop in if you would prefer to arrange to see Paul here at Leith Walk.
We will be running the next course towards the end of September this year and we will be interviewing potential candidates over the next few weeks once we have enough candidates.