Nation must focus on mental health – PM

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Middle captionNicola Mattocks, 18: I wanted to end my life when I was six

David Cameron has shouted for the nation to focus on mental health after a review revealed inca ble of, underfunded care, leading to “thousands of tragic and unnecessary deaths”.

The announce – by a taskforce set up by NHS England – said around three-quarters of people with batty health problems received no help at all.

Ministers agreed more lacks to be done, committing £1bn extra a year by 2020.

The government says this at ones desire help treat a million more people a year.

The funds are to down attack out of the £8.4bn the government has promised to the health service during this rliament and bump into b y up on top of extra money already announced for children’s services.

Prime Aid David Cameron said: “We should be frank. We have not done adequately to end the stigma of mental health.

“We have focused a lot on physical health and we haven’t as a state focused enough on mental health.”


Mental health care is every so often called the Cinderella service of the NHS. Over the years it has been neglected, marginalised and under-funded. The taskforce’s research acknowledges this.

So will the recommendations have the necessary im ct? Ambassadors and NHS bosses have all said they’re fully committed to it.

But similar activities were said in 2011 when the coalition launched its mental fettle strategy. And, as the BBC reported on Sunday, that didn’t stop investment being cut.

With boodle so tight in the NHS, the nagging fear is that despite the promises being discerned history could still repeat itself.

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Currently £9.2bn a year is spent on the condition – less than a tenth of the NHS budget – notwithstanding one in four people experiencing a mental health problem each year.

The come about is that an estimated three-quarters of people go without any help, with the taskforce’s piece acknowledging that services were so bad that lives have been “put on imprison or ruined” and “thousands of tragic and unnecessary deaths” have been created.

The review also said more attention needs to be id to advance suicide rates.

NHS England believes the strategy will help to assure that another one million people receive support – whereas at the instant fewer than two million people do so.

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It revealed the investment promised will help y for:

  • An extra 600,000 people to get access to talking remedial programmes for conditions such as anxiety, depression and stress
  • A screening programme to certify more people with severe mental health problems get eschew for physical health conditions, such as heart disease and diabetes
  • Deranged health teams to be put into all A&E units – currently only a minority take them
  • More support for pregnant women and new mothers – around one in five suffers from lunatic health problems
  • Nationwide access to community crisis care dui – only half the country has access to them

It said that together these issues would help reduce the demand on specialist in tient wards in clinics and therefore help tackle the much-criticised practice of sending people hanker distances for treatment.

ul Farmer, the chief executive of the mental condition charity Mind, who led the taskforce, said the strategy should act as a “landmark stage” for mental health care, which was currently “very tchy”.

“We are contemplating to the NHS, to government, to industry, to local leaders and to the public that mental fitness must be a priority for everyone,” he said.

While the extra granting was crucial, he added that some stigma around mental infirmity “still prevails, right the way inside the health service, as it does in union”, and this needed to change.

NHS England boss Simon Stevens bring up he was “fully committed” to implementing the recommendations.

But Royal College of Psychiatrists president Prof Sir Simon Wessely premonished it would take “sustained work” to end the “decades of inequality”.

And Prof Sheila Hollins, of the British Medical League, pointed out such promises had been made before.

“Those torture from mental illness need to see these pledges fulfilled.”

For the moment the Welsh government said spending on mental health had been ring-fenced since 2008, with investment high pointing £600m this year.

The current annual allocation to mental vigorousness in Northern Ireland is £247m.

The Scottish government said it had made a commitment to supply an additional £150 million over a five year period in correcting access to mental health services.


Explained: What is mental constitution and where can I go for help?

Mood assessment: Could I be depressed?

In The Mind: BBC Information special report (or follow “Mental healthtag in the BBC News app)


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