Mental Health: Health Education

Department of Health written question – answered on 23rd June 2015.

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Photo of Nigel Evans Nigel Evans Conservative, Ribble Valley

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what initiatives his Department has created in order to destigmatize mental health issues.

Photo of Alistair Burt Alistair Burt The Minister of State, Department of Health

The Time to Change initiative is an ambitious national programme being delivered by leading mental health charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness to reduce stigma and discrimination towards people with mental health problems. The Department strongly supports this initiative and it, the Big Lottery Fund and Comic Relief all provided funding for the programme. The Department funded the campaign with over £16 million between 2011/12 and 2014/15 and is to continue funding the organisation until March 2016 with up to £2.5 million. This extension in funding will enable Time to Change to continue to work with people with experience of mental health problems to challenge attitudes and discrimination; run social marketing campaigns and work with local and regional partners on community-led activity.

Since 2011, more than two million people (4.8% of the population) have improved their attitudes towards people who have a mental illness. In the most recent attitudes survey, conducted at the end of 2013, the biggest improvement in public attitudes in a decade was achieved, with a 2.8% improvement between the 2012 and 2013 surveys.

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