More Bad News in Mental Health
A recent article on the BBC’s website has highlighted that the mental health charity Gofal has identified inconsistencies in mental health outcomes in Wales. Gofal identified that there had been no improvement in mental health outcomes since 2012. The key areas that were looked at were:
- The understanding and empathy demonstrated by primary care staff
- The range of advice, treatment and support options offered to people
- Waiting times for assessment, treatment and support
- The impact of these services on people’s mental health and wellbeing
To most professionals and lay people alike would not see that these areas were particularly complex or indeed extraordinary. Yet, the findings speak for themselves, no improvement in 4 years. The Welsh government has said that 90% of the patients who evaluated the service did so positively.
Well, which ever set of figures you choose to believe, one thing is clear, mental health is again in the media for all the wrong reasons. We are the nation that initiated the National Health Service, a beacon of social medicine the world over and something that we should be proud of. However, it appears again that mental health is the poor cousin of physical health, and this simply has to end. Successive governments have promised changes which have never come to pass. What is it going to take for the government to take mental health seriously and work as vigorously to help sufferers in the same way it looks at obesity and smoking?