Only a few days to go: We’re raising £25,000 to keep TheyWorkForYou running and make sure people across the UK can hold their elected representatives to account.Donate to our crowdfunder
The Government has published its report of the work of the Children and Young People’s Mental Health and Wellbeing Taskforce - ‘Future in mind: promoting, protecting and improving our children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing’. The work of the Taskforce took account of the evidence gathered by the Health Committee as part of its recent inquiry into child and adolescent mental health. Future in mind addresses many of the recommendations of the Health Committee’s Third Report of Session 2014-15, Children’s and adolescents’ mental health and CAMHS (HC 342) (published on 5 November 2014).
I established the Taskforce in September 2014, it is co-chaired by the Department of Health and NHS England with involvement from the Department for Education. Membership included people with experience and expertise in children and young people’s mental health, including health organisations, schools, the voluntary and community sector, young people and parents. Its remit was to consider ways to make it easier for children, young people, parents and carers to access help and support when needed and to improve how children and young people’s mental health services are organised, commissioned and provided.
Future in mind sets out a compelling moral, social and economic case for change. 75% of mental health problems in adult life (excluding dementia) start by the age of 18. Early intervention avoids young people falling into crisis and avoids expensive and longer term interventions in adulthood. Evidence presented to the Taskforce also underlined the complexity and severity of the current challenges facing child and adolescent mental health services, including gaps in data, increasing difficulties in accessing treatment, a lack of clear leadership and accountability arrangements, and specific issues facing highly vulnerable groups of children and young people. The evidence highlighted disinvestment at a local level in many areas. The Deputy Prime Minister’s announcement on 14 March of £250m per year additional funding for children and young people’s mental health care and perinatal mental health care over the course of the next Parliament will make an important contribution to addressing these challenges.
The report sets out a clear national ambition in the form of key aspirations that the Government would wish to see by 2020, including:
Future in mind sets out that many of the proposals can be achieved through better working between the NHS, local authorities, voluntary and community services, schools and other local services, rather than needing significant investment. The report also sets out a number of proposals that require critical decisions on further investment and on local service redesign. The additional funding announced by the Deputy Prime Minister on 14 March will provide a significant boost to implementing the proposals (see above).
We are clear that this cannot all be done from Whitehall. There has to be a change in culture in local areas. Future in mind proposes the development of local Transformation Plans for Children and Young People’s Mental Health and Wellbeing in 2015-16 which will clearly articulate the local offer, from health promotion and prevention work to support and interventions for children and young people who have existing or emerging mental health problems. To support this, NHS England will make a specific contribution by prioritising further investment in children and young people’s mental health announced in the Autumn Statement 2014 in those areas that can demonstrate robust action planning through the publication of Transformation Plans. The additional funding announced by the Deputy Prime Minister on 14 March (see above) will help local areas to make the best possible start in developing Transformation Plans. It will also fund completion of roll out of, and the extension of the successful Children and Young People’s Improving Access to Therapies Programme (CYP IAPT). This will ensure more children and young people with mental health problems have access to high quality evidence-based treatments.
A copy of Future in mind has been placed in the Library.