- 5 updates
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said "a change of attitude" towards mental health is needed as he starts a campaign to bring the issue "out of the shadows."
The deputy prime minister's plans to improve standards in mental healthcare have "real potential" but need to be backed up by larger awareness in the community.
Stephen Dalton, chief executive of the NHS Confederation's Mental Health Network, said:
In a wide-ranging speech on the provision of UK mental health care, Nick Clegg is expected to call for the media to take greater care of the way it represents the mentally unwell.
- Urge journalists and those working the media to rely less on negative stereotyping when reporting on the mentally unwell.
- Extend the same legal rights as those with physical conditions to chose where they go for care, from April.
- Mr Clegg is to tell the conference that the choice will not be limited to an NHS organisation, and that patients will also be able to choose from a voluntary or independent provider offering services on the NHS when they go to see their GP to seek help.
- New standards on access and waiting times for mental health services are also to be introduced next year, so that patients will know what kind of treatment to expect and when.
- The Government is also rolling out the Friends and Family Test to mental health services by the end of this year.
Nick Clegg is pledging to raise the standard of mental health care as he tries to "bring mental health out of the shadows".
The deputy prime minister dubbed current attitudes towards the insane "outdated" and "stuck in the dark ages".
In a speech launching the Government's new Mental Health Action Plan, which sets out 25 areas where immediate action is called for to improve care, Mr Clegg will say: "All too often, attitudes to mental health are outdated; stuck in the dark ages; full of stigma and stereotypes.
"It's time for us to bring mental health out of the shadows and to give people with mental health conditions the support they need and deserve."
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