The public’s understanding of mental health has increased recently with more high profile and other individuals opening up about their personal struggles with their mental health. This increased profile has not yet fully translated into improved responsiveness of social care mental health services to meet needs and we still hear stories about people with mental health problems receiving no help at all, leading to hundreds of thousands of lives put on hold or ruined, and thousands of tragic and unnecessary deaths.
The current debate around mental health continues to focus on how the NHS can meet these needs and the voice of social care needs to be strengthened further in this space. It is often thought that NHS spending on mental health services far outweighs that of Local Authorities. This remains a misconception because when Local Authority spending on social workers, commissioned care services, substance misuse services and supported housing are considered, the difference in spending is small.
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