North East’s mental health time bomb

Have your say

THE North East is sitting on a mental health time bomb, a charity has warned.

Mental Health North East, a coalition of hundreds of charities and voluntary groups providing mental health support, warns that failing to meet mental health needs could be dire.

Chief executive Lyn Boyd, said financial restraints were hitting carers. “Cutbacks in health and social care, benefits and welfare reforms are having a hugely negative impact on the mental health of many vulnerable people,” she said. “Then, just when they need help most, mental health services are also under threat.

“Public donations to mental health charities are low in comparison to other causes, so groups and charities are more reliant on dwindling public funds. Charities doing vital work are already dipping into reserves to keep going, but they can’t do this long term.”

There are a number of factors that make the situation in the North East so serious, including higher rates of hospital admission for depression, death rates from suicide, alcohol consumption, gambling repayments and adults with a long-term illness.

Mrs Boyd said: “We need local authorities and the government to see how serious the situation is.”