Reid’s anger at SNP failing Scotland’s mental health services while voting more money for English services

Alan Reid, Liberal Democrat candidate for Argyll & Bute, has called on the SNP Government to increase support for mental health services in Scotland.

Mr Reid spoke out after the SNP Westminster health spokeswoman backed a campaign for increased investment in mental health services in England – while, in Scotland, under an SNP Government, spending on mental health services as a proportion of the overall health budget has fallen since 2009.

Liberal Democrat MP, Norman Lamb, is leading the Equality 4 Mental Health campaign, backed by politicians from across the political spectrum, by mental health charities and by celebrities.

The campaign is calling for a range of actions to boost investment in mental health services as a share of NHS spending. It has documented and highlighted the problems of children being treated for mental ill health in adult wards; and being forced to travel long distances for treatment.

In Scotland, there has been a 40% rise in the number of children treated on non-specialist [largely adult] wards since 2008/09 and some young people have reportedly been forced to wait more than 12 months to receive treatment.

Speaking on this situation, Alan Reid says: ‘The SNPís health spokesman at Westminster has backed calls for an increase in mental health spending but the proportion of the NHS budget in Scotland spent on mental health services is falling year on year.

‘The SNP are saying one thing at Westminster, doing the opposite at Holyrood and hoping that no one joins the dots.

‘With some vulnerable young people having to wait more than a year for treatments, this simply is not good enough.

‘The number of children receiving treatment in adult wards continues to climb. The SNP have the power they need to make most of the changes that the Equality 4 Mental Health campaign want to see. They need to put their money where their mouth is on mental health.

‘It is time that SNP Ministers started taking mental health seriously./

It is arguable that everyone needs to start taking mental health seriously.

Along with the also ill-served addiction recovery needs, mental health is in the zone with which no one really wants to engage.

Yet many children and adults, normally mentally healthy, have periods where their mental health is unstable and their needs are very real.

Mental health is never something that afflicts ‘others’ and can comfortably be neglected by the fortunate.

Facts of Scottish Government performance on mental health

Financial Year    Percentage of Scottish NHS expenditure related to mental health
2009-10    12.77%
2010-11    12.44%
2011-12    12.18%
2012-13    12.18%
2013-14    11.82%

Figures from the Mental Welfare Commission reveal that 207 young people were admitted to non-specialist units – in 2014-15. These units are largely adult wards. This 209 is an increase from 149 such admissions in 2008-09 – a 39% increase  over 6 years or an average of  6.5% per annum over that period.

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Related Articles & Comments

  • Does anyone know how to contact this LibDem candidate?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 10

    Lowry November 23, 2015 5:22 pm Reply
    • We would be happy to forward any message and any contact details from you to Mr Reid to take forward.
      We have been remiss is not reminding people that Alan Reid, the Liberal Democrat candidate for the Holyrood seat in the 2016 Scottish Election is Alan Reid, the well known and widely respected former MP for Argyll and Bute.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 9

      newsroom November 23, 2015 7:48 pm Reply
    • Alan Reid has seen your query, Lowry and has authorised us to make this email public for everyone who wants to contact him:
      alanreidargyllbute@yahoo.com

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 8

      newsroom November 23, 2015 10:12 pm Reply
      • Thank you.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 7

        Lowry November 23, 2015 10:31 pm Reply
  • Yes.Job centre plus,Dunoon

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 11 Thumb down 8

    Hugh Jazz November 23, 2015 6:37 pm Reply
    • HJ – Have you got the contact details for Job Centre Plus in the east of Glasgow? I think someone might need it.

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 8 Thumb down 9

      John M November 23, 2015 6:44 pm Reply
      • Should read “for the job centre”

        Newsroom – could we please have an update on when the edit function will be restored?

        Btw HJ and other SNP supporters, do you not feel in the slightest bit embarrassed by how your party is unfolding and starting to fall apart. You all positioned yourself as ‘holier than thou’, where are you now.

        Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 11 Thumb down 9

        John M November 23, 2015 10:26 pm Reply
      • Carmichael is in Orkney!

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 5

        Hugh Jazz November 25, 2015 6:40 pm Reply
  • Hats off to Reid. Initial cynical thought he was trying to jump back on the gravy train but not so sure. Pretty sure he could of picked up consultancy work or directorships, maybe he has, but the fact he has decided to stay local and keep his politics local is admirable.

    Up against Michael Russell who trounced the opposition last time. Replacing Alison Hay who unashamedly positioned herself against the entire local community on the basis of evidently dysfunctional LA proposals. And not forgetting Tim Farron as an impediment to any political cause. Can he achieve the impossible?

    A long time till May and the SNP are about to nose dive, might be worth a bob or two.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 9 Thumb down 9

    John M November 23, 2015 10:16 pm Reply
    • “SNP about to nosedive”!!
      I must bring to your attention that over 50% of the Scottish electorate will never vote for an unionist party again.
      People will forget what the Blue,yellow and red Tories said and did during the referendum,but they will never forget how they made them feel!!
      I bet you believe in Santa too,you wee soul!!!

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 5 Thumb down 11

      Hugh Jazz November 25, 2015 7:34 pm Reply
      • I’ll never forget how the SNP’s raucous mob of assorted hypernats made me feel.

        Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 10 Thumb down 6

        Robert Wakeham November 25, 2015 7:58 pm Reply
        • In a so called democracy,you are perfectly entitled to you option .
          Only problem is less than 46% would agree with you.
          A worrying aspect,for you, your support is loosing ground,month on month.
          People are being educated,not by the MSM,but by reading between the lines.
          Ukok is on borrowed time,even the dogs on the street know this!!

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 3

          Hugh Jazz November 25, 2015 10:37 pm Reply
      • In respect of Christopher Mason’s post I tried to bite my tongue but Machmaolain you aren’t half a plonker.

        How exactly have you managed to come to the conclusion ” over 50% of the Scottish electorate will never vote for an unionist party again.”?

        Developed mythical powers perhaps or maybe enjoying Mary Jane’s company a little bit too much.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 5

        John M November 25, 2015 10:45 pm Reply
      • HJ indulging in wishful thinking and certainly not facts, yet again.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 5

        Alex McKay November 26, 2015 12:59 pm Reply
        • Prove I am being inaccurate?
          You sound extremely worried.You should be.
          The BritSh&t nonsense is coming to an end!!

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

          Hugh Jazz November 26, 2015 8:23 pm Reply
          • HJ, you appear to be as rattled as the First Minister, the difference is you haven’t got a microphone.

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 4

            Richard November 26, 2015 9:16 pm
          • HJ. You claimed: “I must bring to your attention that over 50% of the Scottish electorate will never vote for an unionist party again.” That’s a wild guess based on wishful thinking. You certainly don’t have any ability to look into the future, nor, judging by your posts here, any ability to comment accurately on the present. All you are exhibiting is increasing desperation to bolster you spirits in the face of the wheels coming off the SNP machine. Two MPs having to resign the whip and who knows how many more might have to follow suit. Oh yes, and Alex Salmond didn’t even bother to turn up for a very important Commons debate. I thought he was meant to be foreign affairs spokesman. And his excuse was both laughable and very typical of the man.

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

            Alex McKay November 27, 2015 3:09 pm
  • Isn’t anyone interested in the mental health issue?

    Unless Argyll and Bute is strikingly different from the rest of Scotland, mental health services are woefully inadequate. When a young person is referred to CAMHS, how soon are they seen? When a person is in mental health crisis, how likely is it that they will be admitted to hospital? What are the chances of their being told, if no bed is available, that they are not really ill and that they have “capacity” to look after themselves “in the community”? When a patient is assessed as needing a “talking therapy” how long do they have to wait before they get it? How many patients or “clients” is each CPN supposed to look after? Why do so many MH patients seem to be stuck in a revolving door?

    These are just a few of the many challenging questions that ought to be asked about mental health services in Scotland. It is profoundly depressing that so few voters in Scotland can be bothered to ask them.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 3

    Christopher Mason November 24, 2015 12:08 am Reply
    • Christopher – fair comment, I should of shown more respect to the article.

      It is such a vast subject with so many different aspects which need addressing. Always the Cinderella service of the NHS, mental health provision has undergone some huge changes over the years. With improved and earlier diagnosis, relatively newer and easier tolerated medication it’s made vast improvements since the ‘asylum’ days but it is facing a crisis with some difficult and awkward questions needing to be asked.

      One example being who should provide ‘mental health services”?

      Currently local Mental Health Services largely take on the full gambit of people presenting with a ‘mental health issue’, whether it’s someone suffering from anxiety attacks or schizophrenia or dementia.

      With an estimated 1 in 5 of the population experiencing a ‘mental health problem’ at some point in their life, is it a good use of resources to have an experienced CPN who has undertaken years of training and expect them to provide a 8 to 10 week course of CBT to an individual who has started to suffer anxiety attacks.

      The person will be experiencing some degree of distress but does an intervention for this individual require a CPN or should we refer them to an independent counsellor for CBT sessions paid for by the state?

      An awful lot of people will throw their hands up in the air and claim it’s privatising the NHS but it would be far more effective than prescribing anti-depressants. The person has the opportunity to engage fully in the CBT process, it would free up a huge amount of time for the local community mental health teams and it’s already being done elsewhere.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 6

      John M November 25, 2015 9:26 pm Reply
      • A mental health and aptitude test for anyone thinking Alan Reid i.e. going to win in 2016.
        14 years an MP and if he sat at the clock in Tobermory for a day he would hardly be recognised
        Jamie Stone is No.1 on the Libdems list for The Highlands and Islands.
        A party having no hope and no chance.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 2

        Keitho November 27, 2015 5:26 pm Reply
  • I’d have trouble recognising John Reid’s successor – despite his Westminster antics, which suggest to me that maybe concern for mental health is not in his ‘to do’ list of self-interests.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

    Robert Wakeham November 27, 2015 6:39 pm Reply

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