Woman 'denied mental health care', told she's 'too pretty to need help'

A woman claims she was denied mental health services because she was considered 'too pretty for help'.

Jade Rowlands, 31, went back-and-forth to the doctors since she was 18 to try and get a diagnosis.

During the first visit to her local GP, the mother of one was diagnosed with anxiety and depression - but she always felt there was another underlying problem, Wales Online reports.

Jade, from Caerphilly, couldn't put her finger on it, but she claims she felt she needed more help.

Though she found her GP really helpful, but when she was transferred to the primary mental health team she felt she wasn't given the right assistance she needed.

It wasn't until she sought private help that she was diagnosed.

She said: "I was diagnosed with psychological trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) - depression, anxiety and panic disorder are secondary to those things.

"I have tried every anti-depressant and have had counselling.

"You start to get into it and then they discharge you - you can only have 10 sessions."

Jade has had two rounds of counselling - one when she was 18 and another the year before last.

After her last counselling session with the team, Jade said she had an appointment to discuss where she would go next.

Jade said: "Basically, they said they didn't feel I needed to see anyone because of my appearance - because of my nails, my hair and my make-up.

"I was well presented - I felt that's what they said.

"Basically the way it came out was they told me I'm too pretty for help.

"I went in there crying. I was distressed going in there."

Jade said the team did offer to put her on another course, set to take place three months from the meeting, but it's been nearly a year and she claims she's heard nothing about it since.

In recent months Jade, with the help of her family, has been able to access private health care for extra support.

She's been receiving private care since October.

Jade said she has been working with a doctor since she suffered two seizures in January.

She said this was a real turning point for her as, after she suffered the seizures, she felt she had hit rock bottom and the only way was up.

When asked about Jade's concerns, a spokeswoman for Aneurin Bevan University Health Board said: "It would be inappropriate to comment on individual cases, however, we would ask Ms Rowlands to make contact with us so that we are able to look into her concerns."

Jade is now in the process of setting up a support group for people in her local area with mental health issues.

'Muddled Minds' was due to launch this week, but has had to be set back due to the coronavirus outbreak.

She hopes the project will be able to be set up later in the year.

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