To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment his Department has made of the potential merits of funding early mental health support hubs in communities across England with the aim of providing easy-to-access drop-in support for young people aged 11 to 25.
While no formal assessment has been made, we are exploring the model of early access of support for children and young people’s mental health with stakeholders. There are currently approximately 60 ‘early support hubs’ in England providing early intervention and prevention services. They are locally designed and funded and often provide a range of services such as sexual health clinics or careers advice. Clinical commissioning groups and local authorities work with local partners to understand local needs and commission these services.
Alongside the additional investment for children and young people aged 0 to 25 years old outlined in the NHS Mental Health Implementation Plan 2019/20–2023/24, we are providing an additional £79 million in 2021/22 to expand children’s and young people’s mental health services. This includes accelerating the coverage of mental health support teams providing early support in schools and colleges. In addition, £15 million will be invested in local authority areas in the most deprived parts of the country to increase prevention and early intervention services. We are also raising awareness of the resources and guidance available to children and young people, their parents and carers through the ‘Every Mind Matters’ online platform.