Mental Health Services

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Health – in the House of Commons at 2:30 pm on 24th March 2009.

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Photo of Phil Hope Phil Hope Minister of State (Care Services; Minister for the East Midlands), Department of Health 2:30 pm, 24th March 2009

I understand the hon. Lady's concerns; it just surprises me sometimes when Opposition Front-Bench spokespersons reel off a list of statistics without asking questions and, more importantly, without acknowledging the substantial extra investment that this Labour Government have put in place and which her party voted against in every Budget since 1997. The issues that she highlights are serious and need to be addressed. I am pleased that the suicide rate in England continues to fall. It is now at its lowest since records began in 1861, and is among the lowest in Europe. I am also pleased that the World Health Organisation said:

"The ambition and pace of change in England has been remarkable over the last 10 years, and mental health services here are increasingly being seen across Europe as a model to follow."

That is a record that the Labour Government are proud of, but we know that there is more to do and we will continue to press forward to improve services across the country.

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