Fewer Beds In Mental Health Facilities

The UK media, particularly the BBC, describes the decrease in the number of spaces in NHS mental health facilities due to budget cut backs. The current government in the UK has a policy whereby some mental health patients are, or have been, integrated into the community. This in itself isn’t a harmful approach, but services within communities are stretched.

Quite often the needs of mental health patients are wholly or partially met by volunteer organisations, but the resources of these organisations are also stretched. With fewer beds in mental health facilities (9% across the country) individuals who need a high level of care either remain in the community without adequate help or rely solely upon voluntary organisations.

While voluntary organisations often provide excellent support, they can’t be expected to “pick up the slack” in the NHS. The trend towards fewer beds in mental health facilities has to be reversed or else people who need a high level of support will become increasingly isolated and potentially unable to integrate back into the wider community.

Individuals whom I see in my capacity as a therapist can certainly attest to the absence of timely and effective help for their mental health issues.