Clegg: Mental health issues should be 'out of the shadows'

Standards of care for the mentally ill need to rise, said the deputy prime minister, who is starting a campaign to "bring mental health out of the shadows". Nick Clegg dubbed attitudes towards mental health "outdated".

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Clegg: 'Change of attitude' on mental health needed

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."

We've provided about £400 million for new talking therapies and over £50 million to make sure there are therapies available to children across the country over the next several years.

Money is important and more money is being put into those therapies that we think aren't being provided overall.

But a change in attitude is just as important as the money, because if we can't encourage people to treat mental health in exactly the same way as we treat physical health, it will always be somehow brushed under the carpet in the NHS.

– Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg speaking to BBC1's Breakfast

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Clegg mental health plan has 'real potential'

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:

For far too long there has been plenty of talk about putting mental health on a par with physical health, but so far this talk hasn't turned into reality...

Today's plan has real potential, but it won't live up to this potential if as a society, we don't put our money where our mouths are and make sure we make progress in mental health much further and much faster.

– Stephen Dalton

Journalists urged to rely less on 'negative stereotyping'

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.

Clegg in drive to improve mental health care

Nick Clegg is pledging to raise the standard of mental health care as he tries to "bring mental health out of the shadows".

Attitudes need to change if the mentally unwell are to receive better care, Nick Clegg will say. Credit: PA

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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