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Psychology: Waiting Lists

Volume 461: debated on Wednesday 20 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will take steps to reduce the waiting time for primary care psychological therapy services for residents of Altrincham and Sale West to less than 15 months. (139187)

Trafford Primary Care Trust (PCT) is putting in place a range of measures to reduce waiting times for psychological therapy services. These include establishing joint working practices across primary care mental health services and primary care psychology services, setting up a single point of access to services and introducing an improved waiting list management service.

We made a manifesto commitment in 2005 to increase the provision of psychological therapies. This followed 2001 Department guidelines on treatment choice in psychological therapies and 2004 guidance, “Organising and Delivering Psychological Therapies”, to help local services to understand best practice and how to organise local services to support access. Last year we embarked on a new programme, Improving Access to Psychological Therapies, to provide more effective and timely access to psychological therapies for people with mild to moderate mental health problems, such as anxiety and depression.