Nick Clegg unveils new mental health proposals

Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg is making two major speeches today – on mental health (to the Guardian Public Services summit) and on the economy (in the City of London).

The mental health speech’s headlines have been included in a┬áparty news release:

In a key speech on health service reform, Liberal Democrat Leader Nick Clegg unveiled plans to guarantee everyone suffering from mental health problems a first appointment for treatment within 13 weeks of referral.

The plans were launched as the Party reveals new figures showing that the average time for those people waiting longest for mental health treatment is over seven months, with some people waiting over three years for treatment such as psychotherapy and counselling.

Psychotherapy has some of the longest waits in the country with one area recording waits for an assessment of more than three years. Meanwhile record numbers of anti-depressants are being prescribed, with the number of prescriptions to children having quadrupled in just one decade.

Some early coverage for the speech and proposals is already online on the BBC’s site here and here.

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