NHS England’s role in mental health

NHS England is giving greater priority and scrutiny to mental health services than ever before. Our role is to support clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) to rapidly improve provision, to achieve the best outcomes for the people who need these services.

The Five Year Forward View set out a clear commitment to driving towards a more equal response across mental and physical health meaning improved access, more effective care and measured outcomes by 2020.

NHS England has three National Clinical Directors supporting our work to improve mental health

Upgrading the quality of care and access to mental health and dementia services in England is a key priority in the NHS England Business Plan for 2015/16. Our key commitments for this include:

  • Throughout 2015/16 develop and implement access and waiting time standards including: Increasing Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT); perinatal mental health; urgent care; eating disorders; early intervention psychosis; and psychiatric liaison.
  • Develop a national mental health strategy outlining the priorities for future service improvement.
  • Work with Health Education England to deliver further transformation of Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services, through the Children and Young People IAPT programme, to work with services covering 78% of 0-19 year olds by March 2016.
  • Achieve and maintain the national dementia diagnosis rate of 67% and develop a five year transformation plan to ensure good post-diagnostic services for people with dementia across England.

The Mental Health Taskforce brings together experts across the health and care system, ensuring that we have the views of people who use services, their families and carers and the professionals who work in the NHS both in and outside of mental health services. The Taskforce is developing a five year strategy which takes forward the proposals set out in the Five Year Forward View.