Monday 10 October is World Mental Health Day and I would like to use it as an opportunity to urge the government to continue to invest in mental health services.
Every year one in six of us will experience mental ill health, yet only a quarter will seek treatment. The social cost of mental ill health is over £100bn – more than the entire NHS budget – and half of all mental health problems begin before the age of 15.
The government’s recent mental health strategy “No Health without Mental Health” sets out how important mental well-being is to every one of us and how much still needs to be done to ensure that people affected by mental ill health enjoy the same chances in life as everyone else.
People with mental health problems tell us they require services that meet both their mental health and social needs. Yet the current reductions in social care and support to the voluntary sector are having a significant impact on the lives of those who are already marginalised and living in poverty.
The British Psychological Society and a number of other professional organisations, including the Royal College of Nursing and the Royal College of Psychiatrists, have written an open letter to the health secretary to call for action to coincide with World Mental Health Day.
As well as continued investment in mental health services, they want to see an emphasis on recovery, job opportunities and fighting discrimination, and call for service users and carers to be involved at the outset in planning, delivering and evaluating mental health services
To read more about World Mental Health Day, click on the following links: