Wefan Gymraeg

Welsh Liberal Democrats Call for 24/7 Mental Health Service

The Welsh Liberal Democrats have reiterated their calls for a 24/7 mental health service to be put in place throughout Wales.  The Party first called for a complete overhaul of mental health services in Wales during the last Senedd elections, calling for mental health to be given equal status to physical health.

Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader Jane Dodds.

The Party’s call comes ahead of a debate in the Senedd today and the monthly release of sCAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services) statistics.

While mental health services are stretched across the board, there is particular concern over the state of children’s services, with an analysis of sCAMHS figures showing that 69.8 percent of first-time referrals are not being seen within the Welsh Government’s target time. In Cardiff and the Vale the figure is much worst at with 90.3% of referrals not being seen within the target time.

The Welsh Liberal Democrats are calling for the Labour Government to introduce plans to introduce a 24/7 mental health crisis care system; increase the share of funding that goes towards mental health to 13 percent of the Welsh NHS budget by 2028 and appoint a dedicated Minister of Mental Health until backlogs are cleared.

Commenting Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader Jane Dodds MS said:

“We are seeing mental health services overstretched and letting people fall through the cracks across the board. But the risk of a significant generational chasm is especially worrying.

“The Welsh Government must ensure that mental health is treated equally to physical health. If a child had a broken leg we would not wait over four weeks to treat it, why should it be acceptable for a child experiencing a mental health crisis to wait so long?

“The Welsh Liberal Democrats have championed the cause of Wales’ mental health, having pushed for greater mental health funding during budget discussions with the Welsh Government, including an immediate cash boost to mental health services.

“These statistics make it clear however that Labour are not meeting expectations and the Liberal Democrats will continue to call for the creation of a 24/7 mental health service in Wales alongside increases in funding towards mental health services in Wales.

“The work voluntary organisations who work with young people suffering from poor mental health do is invaluable and if we are to tackle this epidemic, the Welsh Government must look at sustainable funding capacity for those organisations.”

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