Dr David Shiers

This is the latest addition to RIGHT FROM THE START, a set of resources aiming to equip service users and families with better information and confidence to seek help about physical health from the earliest opportunity.

Why do this? Some people who experience psychosis may face a future affected not only by psychological difficulties but also poor physical health.  Smoking is a common concern – 60% of people experiencing psychosis for the first time are smokers, and 4-5 times more likely to smoke than their peers not experiencing psychosis. Supporting people with early psychosis to improve their health and fitness can help avoid future poor health. Quitting smoking is one of the best ways to do this:

  • Helps people become fitter and avoid future physical illness
  • Improves people’s mental health
  • Puts money in the pocket – saves around £3000 per year (if smoking 20/day)

One size doesn’t fit all: this group of people are just as interested as anyone else in quitting smoking, but may need support to suit their particular needs linked to their experience of psychosis and its treatment. That’s where y-QUIT comes in – to start the conversation between service user and health professional from the mental health team or the GP surgery. Because we know that with the right support people who experience psychosis can quit smoking – find out about SCIMITAR+, the largest study of its kind, which shows how this can be done successfully in ‘real world’ NHS settings.

Download y-QUIT 

to start the conversation.


Contact e: david.shiers@doctors.org.uk to find out how your organisation can obtain copies of y-QUIT or any of the RIGHT FROM THE START resources.

y-QUIT the fruit of international collaboration*. Developed by service users and clinicians as part of the y-QUIT project of South Eastern Sydney led by Dr Jackie Curtis, we are thrilled to be able to launch this UK version of y-QUIT. This on-going collaboration with Australian colleagues, has enabled sharing of Keeping the Body in Mind and Keeping the Teeth in Mind, similarly-developed resources by the Psychosis Research Unit of Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust.

Find out more about our international collaboration, iphYs

Emily Peckham1; Paul French2,3; Astrid Johnson 6; David Shiers 4,5; 1York University, 2Manchester Metropolitan University, 3Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust, 4Psychosis Research Unit of Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust, Manchester, 5Manchester University, 6Astrid Johnson Graphic Design.