Investing in England’s mental health

2024 Spring Budget

In our submission to the Treasury for the 2024 Spring Budget consultation, we focused on on a select number of areas for targeted investment rather than reflecting all areas where the College would like to see money spent on enhancing mental health services in the near future. 

  • Investment in the mental health estate - the College advocated for a Health Infrastructure Plan for Mental Health, urged the Government to consider a 'mental health investment standard' for capital spending and an urgent injection of capital investment to address the high risk maintenance backlog in mental health sites.  
  • Supporting improved patient flow - among our proposed areas for investment in this area were: targeted investment in crisis lines; funding to enable delivery of the Right Care Right Person initiative; £100m funding for specific and targeted mental health-related discharge packages; and targeted support for the expansion of psychological therapies for those with severe mental illness.
  • Enabling all children and young people to benefit from Mental Health Support Teams - We lastly called on the Government to reaffirm its commitment to the expansion of Mental Health Support Teams over the remainder of the decade.


2021 Comprehensive Spending Review

The October 2021 Government Comprehensive Spending Review laid out the Government’s spending plans for England over a three-year period, 2022/23 – 2024/2025. 

In our submission to the Treasury, we outlined where additional Government spending was needed. We identified three key areas for investment: buildings/estate, mental healthcare services, and workforce. 

  • Buildings/estate need investment to make them safer, more suitably therapeutic environments, providing patients dignity, and clinicians a pleasant working environment.
  • Mental healthcare services and wider social services need investment both to ensure people can get timely help in the right service, but also to help keep people as well as possible. 
  • Workforce needs investment so that we have a more sustainable mental health workforce supply to meet current and future levels of demand.

We made the case for ring-fenced capital investment of £3bn, plus £1bn for day-to-day spending for buildings/estate and technology.

We also asked for an additional settlement for mental health revenue spending on services of £1bn in 2022/23, £1.5bn in 2023/24 and £2.4bn in 2024/25. This was over and above the ring-fenced investment already committed in the Long-Term Plan funding settlement.

We urged the Government to invest further in mental health, to help overcome the lack of parity with physical health service investment. It was intended to enable services to overcome the current mental health crisis, resulting from the pandemic and accompanying restrictions. 

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