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Credit crunch threat to mental health

10th October 2008

A survey has shown that the impact of the recent credit crunch and global financial slump could be a "disaster" for mental health.

confusionUK Charity Rethink's survey of 2,000 people showed that homes being repossessed posed the highest danger of mental health issues, followed by redundancy and infertility problems.

Rethink's director of public affairs Paul Corry said he thought there would be an increase in the numbers of people visiting their GP because of mental health problems due to the recent financial crisis.

"Even for people lucky enough to hang on to their home, the stress and worry of arrears building up can be enough to harm your mental health - this survey shows it worries millions of us."

He explained that people who suffered from mental health issues had more chance of being treated badly by people or institutions who had lent them money and who lacked a "safety net".

He added: "There's an urgent need to do something to prevent a mental health disaster."

A different report by the World Health Organisation report showed that England and Wales spent the highest amount in Europe - 13.8% of its budget - on mental health.

The amount of psychiatrists per 100,000 people was also shown to be over the European average.

Health Secretary Alan Johnson stated that he was "delighted" by the news and said that community care was the "focus" for the future.

"The pernicious concept of the asylum is over, but our commitment to improving services further is undiminished," he said.




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