Huge response to mental health taskforce survey

The recently established Mental Health Taskforce has received an astonishing response to its call for the views of service users, their families and professionals who work in mental health.

As he talks at the NHS Confederation annual conference in Liverpool today, Paul Farmer, the independent chair of the mental health taskforce and Chief Executive of Mind, writes in a blog that the huge response serves to confirm the importance and urgency of the group’s ongoing work.

“Over 20,000 people have taken part in our online survey, “he writes, adding: “The huge response has shown us the strength of feeling around the need to improve services for mental health.”

Both Mr Farmer and NHS Engcccland Chief Executive, Simon Stevens, have outlined to the Confed conference the emerging themes of responses from people about changes to mental health services.

The Mental Health Taskforce brings together health and care leaders and experts in the field, including people using services, to lead a programme of work to create a mental health Five Year Forward View for the NHS in England.

Formed in March 2015, its principal task is to develop a new five year national strategy for mental health covering services for all ages which will be published in the autumn. This is the first time there has been a NHS England-led strategic approach to designing mental health services for all ages spanning the health and care system.

Read more about the work of the taskforce here.


  1. Carl Curtis says:

    Wonderful news that the Conservative Government through the NHS Executive are going to ensure that Mental Health receives as much priority as other disabling & death causing illnesses.I am a Registered Mental Nurse & qualified in 1966.I have seen the changes that have very slowly transformed the stigma of suffering from a mental illness.I still practise as a Practice Nurse & find my training & experience is more useful in General Practice than it was working as a Mental Liaison nurse.I can now see people who live in the Community & use my job & interdisciplinary connections to prevent young & older people feeling ” brushed off” by attending.I hope to go on practicing & to experience the valuable work the Mental Health Task Force will bring to the care of people with Mental Health illnesses.

  2. Irene Stratton says:

    20,000 responses isn’t that many considering that at a very conservative estimate 1% of the population have a serious mental illness (Schizophrenia or bipolar disorder).So that’s at least 500,000 people with a disorder, each of those has at least one person who might want to comment ( a close friend or family member) plus the health professionals directly working in mental health and all those who find a higher proportion than 1% in their waiting rooms (A&E, diabetes for a start).
    So about 1% of those who might reply have done so.