The Liberal Democrats have promised to pump an additional £2.25 billion into improving mental health services if they are back in government.
Nick Clegg made the announcement during the first full day of campaigning, as part of his ‘manifesto for the mind’. He said equality for mental health was a “liberal mission”. The announcement follows the Coalition government promising £1Bn of funding last October.
In addition, Clegg has promised to make mental health one of the leading issues of the campaign and implement policies to support this if elected.
Mental health charity, MIND, have criticised cuts to mental health funding. Chief Executive Paul Farmer said ” The next government will need to hit the ground running on mental health. Those in power can no longer ignore the fundamental truth that services only work when they are properly resourced.”
Felicity Dormon, senior policy fellow at the Health Foundation charity praised the plans for more funding but said it was important for the Lib Dems to be clear where the money was coming from.
She said: “Re-balancing total NHS spend in favour of mental health may be the right thing to do, but it could mean quality in other areas suffers, and any party that makes this pledge will need to be clear on where this will be.”
MIND have set up a petition to ensure that the next government acknowledge and act upon the issue of mental health.