Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

PSYCHIATRISTS WARN OF COLLAPSE OF MENTAL HEALTH PROVISION

  • Comment
Mental health services in some parts of the country are on the point of collapse and the government's community car...
Mental health services in some parts of the country are on the point of collapse and the government's community care policy is in danger of falling apart, according to the Royal College of Psychiatrists.

The college cites 'a fundamental failure in the development and implementation of mental health policies' as an underlying cause of the crisis and 'a contributory factor to the increasing problems in the implementation of community care'.

Launching the Manifesto for mental health, college president Dr Robert Kendall said immediate action coupled with a long-term strategy to invest in services was vital to avert an imminent crisis.

The manifesto contains a nine-point plan for action. It recommends a national strategy to put in place comprehensive services, adequately funded mental health promotion work, improved training for staff in the mental health field and a review of the relevance of current mental health and community care legislation.

The college also highlights problems it says are contributing to an imminent crisis.

These are:

-- Excessive run-down in the numbers of psychiatric beds - halved in the past 15 years

-- An inadequate increase in community services to cope with patients no longer in hospital care

-- Inadequate or non-existent provision of 24-hour nursed beds to provide long-term care for very dependent severely mentally ill people

-- Staff shortages in key areas which mean proven therapies and techniques which can benefit patients are not widely available.

Dr Kendall said: 'The current crisis in community care cannot be allowed to continue. This country could and should provide mental health services as good as those provided for other types of ill health.'

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions.

Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.