South East and Central Essex Mind, 112a Southchurch Road

Southend-on-Sea, Essex, SS1 2LX

Charity registration number 1148451

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Report reveals benefits pressure is driving mental health care demand


A new report by NHS Providers has revealed that according to NHS mental health trusts there is a substantial care deficit from the impact of things like benefits, housing issues and loneliness in peoples communities.

The report identifies widespread concerns about benefits cuts and the impact of universal credit. It also indicates that loneliness, homelessness and financial hardship are adding to pressures on NHS mental health services.

Responding to this, SECE Mind's Chief Officer Ken Sanderson, says:

"It doesn’t take a genius to work out that when people are in a place where they need benefits help and support, they are likely to be under pressure or extreme pressure affecting the whole family. The changes in the benefits system and the austerity programme started in 2008/9 gathering pace in recent years has had an impact on all benefit claimants, particularly those with mental health problems. It’s clear that very difficult life circumstances, even in the short term and mental health issues can be closely linked but this is often overlooked by the authorities administering housing, disability and other benefits. We realise the Government has had to make difficult funding choices but we believe that by not recognising those in poor mental health when seeking benefit advice and support, additional unplanned pressure is being put on the NHS for the support people will need when not being treated without empathy and respect."

SECE Mind is not funded nationally and relies on the generosity of the public to keep vital local services open. Please consider fundraising or donating to us.