6 May 2021 – Mental Health Network – governance during the COVID-19 pandemic webinar

06 May 2021

This week’s webinar opened with a discussion about mental health inequalities, during which the following stats were shared.

  • Only about 38% of children and young people with a mental disorder are accessing specialist mental health services.
  • Children and young people from deprived backgrounds are more likely to have mental health problems, especially behavioural problems such as conduct disorder, or ADHD
  • Children and young people in contact with the justice system are much more likely to have mental health problems.
  • People with learning difficulties and/or autism are more likely to have mental health problems.
  • People with mental ill health die on average 10-17 years before those without mental health problems
  • The average life expectancy for men with a learning disability is 14 years less than men without a learning disability, and 18-years less for women with LD compared to those without.
  • Between 25 percent and 40 percent of people with a learning disability also have mental health problems. Their mental health problems are much more likely to be associated with social determinants rather than their LD.
  • About 90% of prisoners have some form of mental health problem, personality disorder or substance misuse. Much higher than the general population, but there is limited access to psychological interventions and mental health support within prisons.

Overheard during the webinar:

“A focus on clearing the backlog risks the focus on health inequalities being lost. There should be a focus on redesigning services to reduce health inequalities. If all parts of society did this around the social determinants of health it would reduce inequalities and likely save costs.”

“In ICSs there can be a huge gradient between wealthier and poorer wards. It’s critical that ICSs take this seriously as it will have a huge impact on individuals’ health. Will we see a prioritisation of funding towards this, and will they take up the opportunity and strategically focus on this?”

“In Birmingham the local authorities and public health have their own programmes around health inequalities, which seems quite separate from the ICS. It feels like they are taking the lead, and the NHS needs to get its house in order. Whilst focusing on the wider social determinants of health is important, there is also a need to focus on mental health service provision and focusing on what we can change.”

“A priority needs to be to understand the definition around avoidable and preventable problems. It is then important to look at what is avoidable and preventable within your own trust and services, and then you can see the range of challenges. Only after this should we be looking wider at the social determinants of health. We need more information and reports around the key areas where people are suffering and how we will be improving their outcomes.”

These meetings are by invitation only. For further details, visit our website https://www.good-governance.org.uk/events/.

If you have any comments, questions or suggestions about these webinars, please contact: events@good-governance.org.uk