Preet Kaur Gill MP: NHS plan fails to address mental health inequalities
The Government's long term plan for the NHS fails to address mental health inequalities, according to a West Midlands MP.
Labour MP Preet Kaur Gill said it was a "disgrace" that the new approach only commits to NHS funding of new mental health support teams for around a quarter of the country over the next five years.
She said: "This decision will leave thousands of children every year still unable to receive the help and support they need."
The MP for Birmingham Edgbaston and former Sandwell councillor also called for schools to be involved in the commissioning of mental health services to ensure children "get the help that they actually need".
She added: "To add insult to injury, the year long training required to be an education mental health practitioner working in one of the new mental health support teams is only just commencing.
"Does that mean we will have to wait at least a year for the first mental health support team to be in place?
"There is far too little focus on how we should address inequalities in mental health which we know are not distributed evenly across society.
"We need a preventative approach to mental health to address the causes as well as the effects."
Ministers launched a 10-year plan for the NHS after announcing its budget will be increased by £20bn a year by 2023.
Around £2.3bn has been set aside for improving mental health care, which the Government says will ensure there are dedicated services for young people so they are not pushed into adult services as soon as they turn 18.
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