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Media attention to emotional and psychological problems has a long history. Television programmes have been relatively rare because of problems of anonymity and spontaneity. A TV series presenting real-time assessment and formulation of emotional problems was broadcast for 5 years in London. The 105 subjects who appeared on the programme are presented in terms of their demographic characteristics, problem type and outcome. Subjects had a wide range of backgrounds and their ages were from 18 to 65 years. Half presented problems sufficiently serious to warrant intervention from a GP or mental health professional. Older subjects and women were generally more likely to be judged as helped by the programme and over half were referred on for further help. The experience of the programme suggests a significant change in public attitudes towards self disclosure and stigma. Adequate ethical guidelines are needed for such activity.

Original publication




Journal article


Journal of Mental Health

Publication Date





381 - 387