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University unveils three new degrees to support crisis in mental health and social care sectors

13 February 2017


Wrexham Glyndwr University has unveiled three new degrees targeting the crisis in mental health and social care.

The DipHE Contemporary Health Studies, BSc Health and Wellbeing, and BSc Mental Health and Wellbeing are now recruiting for the 2017/18 academic year.

The programmes will be led by Catherine Hewins, Gill Truscott and Justine Mason, who says the level of care and support the NHS provides is unsustainable due to the financial burden of preventable illness and the growing number of people living with mental health issues.

“The focus is moving to prevention rather than cure, wellbeing and good mental health, and exploring the links between mental and physical health,” said Justine.

“With support and intervention being carried out in a much more imaginative way by non-traditional providers such as social enterprises and third sector organisations – including the successful Men’s Sheds Association and Advanced Brighter Futures – there are new and exciting ways to approach and resolve these issues long-term.”

She added: “What we’ve done here at Wrexham Glyndwr University is design three courses that will give our graduates the knowledge and skills to access a wide range of careers.

“The work is industry-relevant and all students will undertake modules relating to physical and mental wellbeing, as well as specialising in one area depending on the programme they choose.

“These could be anything from anti-stigma to global health concerns, all linking in with a Welsh Government drive to tackle these problems for future generations.”

In October, a new delivery plan to improve mental health and wellbeing in Wales was launched by Health Secretary, Vaughan Gething.

Together for Mental Health is a 10-year, cross-government strategy which contains a range of actions to support people with severe and enduring mental illness.

The delivery plan contains a number of new objectives, includingimproved support for young people, particularly those at risk of adverse childhood experiences, a new strategic action plan for dementia, and proposals to address suicide and self-harm.

Sara Moseley, director of Mind Cymru, welcomed the initiative but said the mental health arena is still “significantly underfunded.”

She added: “Mental health and well-being affects every aspect of people’s lives, so we’re glad that Welsh Government is focusing on outcomes for people with mental health problems, whatever their age.”

The University’s DipHE Contemporary Health Studies and BSc Health and Wellbeing are also aimed at sectors struggling to cope with public demand, and have been tailored to support them.

“We have a growing older population with complex needs,” said Catherine.

“Care is better placed within the community and prevention of loneliness is a big factor in keeping these people in their own homes, so both degree and diploma will cover this.”

She added: “Prevention is now key to health and wellbeing, and health promotion is key to keeping people out of the acute sector and empowering them to address their own needs before they become ill.

“Global health issues are on the rise – including the obesity crisis and co-morbidities like type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease and cancer – and with growing migrant populations, asylum seekers, people trafficked for slavery and refugees, there are many more issues on the world stage, all of which are addressed on the Contemporary Health Studies course.”

The School of Social and Life Sciences at Wrexham Glyndwr University will hold a taster day on Wednesday February 22 for anyone interested in finding out more about the new degrees.

For the latest on new courses, visit or come to the University’s next open day on March 4 from 10am-2pm.