RCPsych responds to King's Fund report on mental health care

Statement / comment
21 February 2024

The King's Fund has launched it's Mental health 360 review of mental health care in England.

Responding to the report, Dr Lade Smith CBE, President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, said:

“England is facing a public mental health emergency. Decisive action must be taken to reverse rising rates of mental illness and ensure fewer people reach a crisis point.

“This report brings some much-needed attention to the systemic issues which are preventing people from accessing timely and effective care. The Government and NHS must work with services to address long waiting lists, bed shortages, inequalities faced by marginalised and minoritised groups as well as regional disparities.

“It will be difficult to implement effective change which tackles these issues without a fully staffed workforce. There is an estimated shortfall of around 800 full-time equivalent consultant psychiatrists across England and more needs to be done to boost retention as well as recruitment.

"Additional research is needed to help improve our understanding of effective evidence-based interventions and treatment methods that work best for people with mental illness. This will allow services to provide people with the most effective form of care quickly and prevent them from developing long-term illnesses.”

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