Who cares? Listening to the needs and experiences of carers of people with mental illness

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The purpose of this paper is to assist and inform the CPsychI about the role and rights of carers and the contributions they can make to the education of trainee psychiatrists and the ongoing professional development of practicing psychiatrists.

As such, this paper itemises the themes identified by the carers’ subgroup of the REFOCUS forum (patients and carers) of the College of Psychiatrists of Ireland (CPsychI) established in late 2011. The themes were collated from the personal experiences of carers and patients submitted in writing to the subgroup and from oral and other contributions.