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The Royal College of Psychiatrists Improving the lives of people with mental illness

Mental Health Taskforce and strategy

Read our briefing on the findings of the independent Mental Health Taskforce and the implications for psychiatrists and the wider NHS workforce

The Mental Health Taskforce, launched in March 2015, has been responsible for creating and publishing a new five-year, all-age national strategy for mental health to 2020, aligned to the Five Year Forward View (link opens in new window).

Prof Sir Simon Wessely, President of RCPsych and Dr Adrian James, Registrar, with the support of the Policy Unit, have played a pivotal role in its development, working alongside the Chair, Paul Farmer, Co-chair, Jacqui Dyer and other members of the Taskforce.

The approach used by the Taskforce has been one of co-production, involving people with lived experience of mental health problems, carers, professionals, providers, voluntary organisations and the component parts of the NHS throughout the process. The Policy Unit worked closely with all Faculties and Sections of the College to ensure that the views of people working across all psychiatric specialties were incorporated.

We welcome the publication of the final report, which marks the first time a shared national ambition for mental health in the NHS has been set for the arm’s-length bodies, across the life course. The findings will have implications for service users, carers and families as well as the NHS workforce, NHS providers and commissioners.

Furthermore, the NHS in England has committed to the biggest transformation of mental health care across the NHS in a generation, pledging to help more than a million extra people and investing more than a billion pounds a year by 2020/21. This investment is in addition to the previously announced new funding for children, young people and perinatal mental health care.

NHS England have published, Implementing the Five Year Forward View for Mental Health, a report outlining how new funding, pledged in response to the Five Year Forward View for Mental Health, will be made available for CCGs year on year. The report also shows how the workforce requirements will be delivered in each priority area as well as outlining the way in which data, payment and other system levers will support transparency.

The RCPsych will play its part in making these outcomes a reality through our policy and public affairs efforts, as well as through other projects relevant to the delivery of the Five Year Forward View. This includes, but not limited to, our work on the New Care Models programme.

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