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Mental health is a matter of concern for all nurses, says minister

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Nurses have a responsibility to improve patients’ mental health under an initiative announced by care services minister Phil Hope last week.

Whatever their specialty, nurses should highlight examples of how they are working with patients to improve their mental and physical health, said Mr Hope.

He was speaking to Nursing Times last week after launching the government’s New Horizons initiative to promote a new approach to public mental health and well-being.

He said he wanted all nurses, not just those working in mental health, to get involved in the New Horizons consultation on how to promote better mental health and target the ‘root causes of poor mental health’.

The consultation, which will close in October, will look at children’s, young people’s and adult mental health, he said.

‘I would very much like to hear from school nurses and health visitors about what they think about the document and what we can do to improve the emotional health of children.

‘I want to know what kind of support they can give to parents with parenting skills. As well as referring children with signs of mental health issues to specialist services,’ he told Nursing Times.

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