Author Topic: England's mental health services 'in crisis'  (Read 709 times)

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Offline EC

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England's mental health services 'in crisis'
« on: October 16, 2013, 01:45:57 AM »
A cautionary tale via the BBC: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-24537304

Quote
The mental health service in England is in crisis and unsafe, says one of the country's leading psychiatrists.

Dr Martin Baggaley, medical director of the South London and Maudsley NHS Trust, spoke out as an investigation by BBC News and Community Care magazine reveals more than 1,500 mental health beds have closed in recent years.

Many trusts have all their beds filled.

Care Minister Norman Lamb said the current situation was "unacceptable" and provision must improve.

While there was a drive to treat more people in the community, he said beds must be available when patients needed them.
System 'inefficient, unsafe'

Freedom of Information requests were sent to 53 of England's 58 mental health trusts, by BBC News and Community Care, and 46 trusts replied.

The figures show that 1,711 mental health beds have been closed since April 2011, including 277 between April and August 2013.

This represents a 9% reduction in the total number of mental health beds available in 2011/12.

Three quarters of the bed closures were in acute adult wards, older people's wards and psychiatric intensive care units.

Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Trust has cut its inpatient beds by 157, while St George's and South West London has removed 155 beds.

Behind the statistics lie the consequences for staff and patients.

On the morning Dr Baggaley spoke to the BBC, he said a severely distressed patient had been transferred from Croydon to Hertfordshire as there were no beds in London.

He has 50 patients in beds outside his trust, some as far away as Somerset.

He said: "We are in a real crisis at the moment. I think currently the system is inefficient, unsafe.

"We're certainly feeling it on the front line, it's very pressured, and we spend a lot of our time struggling to find beds, sending people across the country which is really not what I want to do."


More at link.

Care in the community does not work terribly well even in a close, tight knit community. It was a foolish idea that has cost millions more than keeping the beds and mental care units open.
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Offline Cincinnatus

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Re: England's mental health services 'in crisis'
« Reply #1 on: October 16, 2013, 01:58:07 AM »
In a few more years we too, after ObamaCare becomes fully implemented in this country.
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Offline EC

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Re: England's mental health services 'in crisis'
« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2013, 02:18:24 AM »
With respect to mental care, you are already far along the road to our completely pathetic lack of service. That came out quite clearly after Sandy Hook.

This is one thing I am totally blaming Lady Thatcher for. Her government developed the care in the community process, to save money by shutting units and long term care homes. Sure, people with mental illness can be active and kept on an even keel through medication much of the time. You are relying on them to actually take their medication on their own responsibility. Not exactly a recipe for success there.
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Offline Cincinnatus

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Re: England's mental health services 'in crisis'
« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2013, 02:31:26 PM »
Must disagree:

With respect to mental care, you are already far along the road to our completely pathetic lack of service. That came out quite clearly after Sandy Hook.

It wasn't that services weren't available but rather that those closest to Lanza, most particularly his mother, did not avail themselves of them.

That is quite a different issue from a lack of services due to a lack of funding or an overburdening due to demand. That will be the inevitable consequence of a government run socialized system where everything is free, or very low cost, and medical care of all kinds is a "right".
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Offline EC

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Re: England's mental health services 'in crisis'
« Reply #4 on: October 16, 2013, 02:38:17 PM »
I recall that she had difficulty in getting him treatment. I may be mistaken - just woke from a nap and still blurry!

But it was a huge aspect that came out after the shooting. The need for decent mental health care.
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Offline GourmetDan

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Re: England's mental health services 'in crisis'
« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2013, 03:34:41 PM »

Reducing supply is how you save money in socialized medicine...


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