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Mental Health Services

Department of Health written question – answered on 3rd November 2014.

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Photo of Chris Ruane Chris Ruane Labour, Vale of Clwyd

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps he is taking to improve access to NICE-recommended mindfulness-based therapies on the NHS.

Photo of Norman Lamb Norman Lamb The Minister of State, Department of Health

Over the course of the current spending review, we are investing in excess of £400 million in England to give thousands of people access to National Institute for Health and Care Excellence-approved psychological therapies, including Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy.

The 2014-15 Mandate to NHS England makes clear that ‘everyone who needs it should have timely access to evidence based services’. The Mandate sets a clear objective for NHS England to deliver the key objectives of the Improving Access to Psychological Therapy (IAPT) programme – providing access to therapies to 15% of those eligible (around 900,000 people) per year by 2015.

We are increasing the availability of IAPT services to cover children and young people and exploring extending services to people with long-term physical health problems and those with severe mental illness.

We have invested £54 million over the period 2011 – 2015/16 in the Children and Young People’s Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (CYP IAPT) programme. The Programme works with services covering up to 60% of England’s 0-19 population, and will cover approximately 68% by the end of 2014-15. This is giving children and young people improved access to the best evidenced mental health care. NHS England is planning for a countrywide extension of the programme with Health Education England.

The IAPT programme is working with a number of the Department’s Strategic Partners to promote wider access of the service to all sections of the community. The partners are working with IAPT service providers to identify and overcome the barriers to people gaining access to IAPT services.

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