Writing in a recent blog post, Dr Martin McShane, Director for Long Term Conditions, NHS England, asserts that the disparity in approach between people with physical and mental health problems is inequitable and unfair.
Dr McShane states facts including that:
… over 75% of those with heart disease are in treatment, for people with diabetes or hypertension more than 90% are in treatment. Conversely only 25% of people with depression or anxiety receive treatment.
If you have mental illness it can reduce your life expectancy by 10 years because of your poor physical health, individuals with mental health issues have the same life expectancy as the general population did 50 years ago. The system is failing these individuals
Dr Martin McShane argies that we need to value the importance of mental health on a par with that of physical health. That is why NHS England has launched a call to action and why Parity of Esteem is one of the key themes it will be pursuing at a national, local and personal level.