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Mental Health Services

Volume 463: debated on Thursday 19 July 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what choices are being offered to mental health service users. (148733)

The Department launched “Our Choices in Mental Health” in November 2006 and this sets out four points in the care pathway where mental health service users and carers value choice. This document also provides positive practice examples of how this is now being offered.

The four choice points are:

life choices, where people manage their own care to the extent with which they are comfortable, and maintain their normal lives as far as is possible;

a choice of mental health services contacts other than a general practitioner being the only port of call for service users and carers during an episode of mental illness;

a choice in when and where an assessment of mental illness is carried out; and

a choice of care options so that service users and carers have a range of suitable care options to choose from, information about each option and support to make these decisions.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has to review mental health services; and if he will make a statement. (149848)

The “National Service Framework for Mental Health” (NSF) was published in 1999, setting out a comprehensive vision for mental health care in England and outlining a 10 year programme of work in an area that was previously neglected.

The NSF was reviewed in 2004 by Louis Appleby, the National Director for Mental Health. His report, “The National Service Framework for Mental Health—Five years on”, identified the need to broaden the focus of work from the specialist mental health services to the mental health needs of the community as a whole.

The NSF’s programme of work is kept under regular review, especially in the light of recent reforms to health and social care systems.