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The Royal College of Psychiatrists Improving the lives of people with mental illness

New statement on the Bill

This morning I had the real pleasure of meeting with Professor Neil Greenberg, who is the Defense Professor of Mental Health. His Chair came about, and was granted, by the College. He told me of the fascinating work that he is carrying out in primary, secondary and tertiary prevention, working with those serving in the armed forces and their families. I am looking forward to regular meetings with Neil, and taking issues of common concern forward.

The rest of my morning was spent on the Health and Social Care Bill.  Many thanks to all of you who responded to the survey on the Bill we sent out last week. You can see a breakdown of the survey results here. We have not had time to analyse the qualitative responses yet, but will do so this week and post the results on the website next week.

We've used your responses to help us produce a new College statement clarifying our position on the Bill. I hope you will all take the time to read this statement in detail, and feedback to me with your comments if you wish - as always, you can use the comments form below.

But, in short, we believe the Bill is fundamentally flawed and will not improve the health and care of people with mental illness. The College is therefore not able to support the Bill as it currently stands.

In the statement, we’ve stopped short of calling for the Bill to be withdrawn. But we believe that it is wrong for the government to continue without making the significant changes that we and other medical professionals have been calling for now for many months.

We understand that the government is due to publish a large number of amendments to the Bill shortly. On behalf of our members and patients, we will scrutinise these amendments carefully in order to make an informed decision on whether or not they address the very real concerns of psychiatrists.


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