We still need to talk

We still need to talkThis report published by Rethink Mental Illness reveals that a third of people with the most severe mental illness are not offered talking therapy by the NHS.

Yet evidence shows that when people do get help, it improves their health and helps make recovery possible – it can also help prevent people from developing psychosis in the first place.

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The We Need To Talk coalition is a group of charities, professional organisations, Royal Colleges and service providers which believes in the effectiveness of psychological therapies.

The We need to talk coalition is calling for the NHS in England to offer a full range of evidence-based psychological therapies to all who need them within 28 days of requesting a referral, and this wait should be even shorter when someone presents with a mental health emergency.

Accessing the right treatment at the right time can mean recovering well from a mental health problem. Timely access to good quality psychological therapy provision is essential and although the Government has made good progress with its Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) programme, there is still much to do before people with mental health problems receive the crucial help and support they need.

The Health and Social Care Act 2012 put mental health on a par with physical health and the Government reiterated this commitment through its current mental health strategy No health without mental health. Furthermore, the current Mandate to NHS England clearly requires NHS England to achieve parity of esteem between mental and physical health. As a first step towards achieving this commitment, timely and appropriate access to psychological therapies must be available in the NHS to all who need them.