Our Mental Health Crisis: Insight 5 of 10

Mental health service funding lags behind physical health services…..

Extra money has  been earmarked for adult services in England. Together with the investment in children’s services it means by 2020-21 £1.28bn more should be spent in real terms than was in 2015-16.

Ministers say the money will be used to put mental health services in A&E, more crisis teams in the community and a focus on helping new mothers, with one in five reporting problems in the first year after the birth of their baby.

But an analysis last year by the King’s Fund health think tank found 40% of mental health trusts in England had actually seen their budgets cut in 2015-16.

While 23% of NHS activity is taken up by mental illness, mental health trusts have been receiving only about 11% of funding in recent years.

Chart on mental health budget

Extra investment is being made in the other parts of the UK. Wales and Scotland have both recently unveiled new plans.

But like England, mental health remains the poor cousin compared to the spending on physical ailments.