Guidance for implementing Long Term Plan mental health ambitions in local areas

Over summer NHS England has published the NHS Mental Health Implementation Plan 2019/20 – 2023/24 guidance for local areas on how to deliver the mental health ambitions within the Long Term Plan through the development and delivery of their local plans for the next 5 years.

Following the publication of the national NHS Long Term Plan strategy earlier this year all local areas in England are now being tasked with developing their strategic plans for delivering this transformation in their local area.

Why is this guidance important?

The College welcomes the ambitious pledges in the Long Term Plan to significantly improve of mental health services. However, there will be a long journey to travel to ensure that the ambitions are realised in all local areas. It is crucial that all local areas take this guidance into account when devising their local plans -  so please do take any opportunity to raise this guidance with colleagues in your local area.

The guidance is primarily aimed at the leaders of local STP/ICS (integrated care system) areas and sets out information on funding, transformation activities and indicative workforce numbers to support the development of plans, which are due to be completed by the end of this year.

It also outlines which ambitions will come with a national access or coverage trajectory, and where the delivery pace will be tailored locally. The guidance indicates where plans should align with other priority areas including primary care, Ageing Well, intellectual disability and autism and long-term conditions.

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