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Mental health and well-being

Close up of woman's face

At any one time around one adult in six is experiencing symptoms of mental illness and one in four will experience mental illness during their lifetime. Mental illness is the largest single cause of disability in our society and costs the English economy at least £77 billion a year.

Policy around mental health is developing, in line with the Coalition Government’s emphasis on identifying what actually happens to the health of the patient - the outcome - as a result of the treatment and care they receive, as well as giving major importance to the voice of patients and service users, and handing GPs a central commissioning role.

A consensus has emerged recently around broadening the focus of mental health from improving services to include public mental health and mental well-being.

Mental health policy cannot be devised and implemented by any single government department or the NHS alone - it requires collaboration across central government, local government and the independent sector.

Additional links

NHS Choices (opens new window)

Mental health advice for service users and the public.

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