Care UK slams cuts to mental health services
Caring Times, March 2014
Care UK’s mental health director Dr Alison Rose-Quirie has voiced concerned about cuts to funding mental health services.
In mid-December the BBC published figures obtained under the Freedom of Information Act which showed that mental health trusts In England have had their funding cut by more than 2% in real terms over the past two years.
“As demand, quite rightly, grows for high quality, publicly-funded mental health services, what amounts to a two per cent cut in mental health funding is bad news for patients, their families and society,” said Dr Rose-Quirie in response to the BBC’s revelation.
“These cutbacks are completely at odds with the way this government talks about how it wants to give the same importance to mental health services and recovery as it does to physical health. Patients and their families are already living with a significant historic lack of investment in mental health services and this is going to make the situation worse not better.”
Care UK runs a number of facilities and is investing in new residential services in places like Hull and Walsall for patients with long term mental health conditions.
On top of the recent cutbacks in funding, Monitor is also recommending a further 1.9% reduction in rates the NHS will pay for all health services for 2014/15.
“Like other providers of mental health services, we understand the severity of pressures on the NHS. We’ve worked hard to find ways of delivering even greater efficiencies but there is little more we can do without it having an impact on services,” said Dr Rose-Quirie.
“Proper sustained recovery from mental health conditions gets people back into work, they can live independently in the community rather than in hospitals and it can even prevent some people from ending up in prison. Society can’t afford not to invest in mental health.”