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Lib Dems call for more accessible mental health services

November 25, 2021 10:14 AM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Responding to​ new embargoed research conducted by the Royal College of Psychiatrists in Scotland that shows almost eight in 10 people think demand for mental health services will increase after the pandemic is over, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader and health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP has today called for more funding for mental health and fresh resources to deliver local and accessible mental health support in all parts of Scotland.

The survey conducted by YouGov also showed that during the pandemic:

  • 32% of respondents have suffered anxiety.
  • 24% of respondents said they have suffered symptoms of depression
  • 23% of respondents have experienced loneliness.

Mr Cole-Hamilton said:

"Provision for mental ill health was in crisis before anyone had ever heard of Covid-19. Adults and children alike who are in crisis have been told to join the longest queue in the National health service.

"These findings are deeply troubling, but they aren't surprising. For people facing long periods of isolation, key workers on the front-line facing burnout and so many families facing bereavement, it has been a long and dark 18 months.

"Asking and receiving help should be normal and easy, however that isn't always the case. Waiting times for mental health services are long and the targets for treating people have never been met and we know that if left untreated small problems can become big crises.

"Scottish Liberal Democrats successfully secured an extra £120 million for mental health to pay for new services in communities but that is just the beginning. We need more funding for mental health and fresh resources to deliver local and accessible mental health support in all parts of Scotland, if we are to deal with the coming tsunami of mental ill health in our communities."