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Talking therapies gets another £400m

4th February 2011

Access to talking therapies will be extended to an extra 1.2 million people with the injection of £400m of additional funding over the next four years.

"Talking therapies: a four year plan of action" was published last week hot on the heels of the governments new mental health outcomes strategy "No health without mental health."

The four year plan focuses on four key areas:

  • early intervention and the mental health of children and young people.
  • equality of access to the IAPT programme for the over 65s
  • extending talking therapies to patients with physical long term conditions and medically unexplained symptoms
  • expanding access to people with more severe mental health conditions

Commissioners will receive an extra £400m over the current parliament to extend the scope of the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies scheme set up by the last government, which cost £173m last year. Although the funding will not be ring fenced, the Department of Health believes it has underlined the importance of talking therapies to NHS commissioners and hopes the funds will increase the number of people who have access to psychological therapies from 2.2m to 3.4m by 2014.

The strategy will also aim to help more than 75,000 people with mental health problems get back to work and save more than £700m healthcare, tax and welfare costs.

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