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Sunday 15th September 2019

Mental health cuts costing NHS millions

10th April 2014

A report highlighted the rising pressures on the mental health trusts to provide care for patients with a diminishing budget.
 The mental health trust budget rose to its highest in 2011/12 but referrals also rose by 13%. Last year’s budget fell by 2.3%, despite higher demand.

Mental Health
This correlates to the community mental health teams, who provide long-term support to patients, being asked to save almost 20% more for next year’s budget than hospitals.

Rethink Mental Illness published the report with the London School of Economics.

In this tough economic situation, the value of service is increasingly important. Minister of State for Care and Support, Norman Lamb, called for a "shift of resources" to preventive care and said that the government had given NHS England a 'clear objective' to put mental and physical health on a par.

The report suggested that a reallocation of the budget could help alleviate the situation. For example, 54% of the psychosis budget was being spent on inpatient care rather than preventative services.

The report said mental health accounted for 23% of the disease burden in England but only received 12% of the health budget.

Early intervention could save money in later stages

It costs £13 a day to support someone with psychosis or schizophrenia in the community. If they were to stay in hospital it would cost £350 a day. Another example of the difference in cost, is the £1,000 the NHS saves every time someone is treated with cognitive behavioural therapy instead of being in hospital.

Norman Lamb, said that early access to treatment in the community was "often the best option" for people with psychosis and schizophrenia.

He also said patients "benefit from being in familiar surroundings among loved ones" and are "less likely to need costly hospital stays".

Dr Martin McShane, national director for long-term conditions at NHS England, said the report was "very helpful" and was supportive of what the organisation wanted to achieve.

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