Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Former spin doctor calls nurses to fight mental health cuts

  • 1 Comment

Nurses have been asked to stand together to fight cuts to mental health services by former government advisor Alastair Campbell.

Addressing the Royal College of Nursing annual congress in Liverpool this week, he said mental illness was at the “base of the pile” in the “disease prestige league table”, and this was reflected in funding and public opinion.

But he warned cutting mental services was a false economy and would lead to greater pressure on the public sector – those suffering will need even more complicated and costly support.

Mr Campbell said personal experience had made him a champion for people with mental health issues.

He told congress about his own mental breakdown in 1986 and spoke of how the support of his employers, family and skilful mental health nursing staff made it possible for him to recover.

He said: “Depression is an illness just like any other…a decline in the nation’s mental health budget will lead to a decline in the nations’ mental health.”

Speaking about the current government’s reform agenda, Mr Campbell said there was “huge anger” and that “nurses are pretty fired up”.

He said he hoped the government’s “pause” in pushing through the Health and Social Care Bill meant the changes may not go forward.

He said: “They are getting a flavour of just how much opposition there is, but actually I think what they are trying to do is park it up for now, get through the local elections and bring it back.”

He stressed that nursing staff and the RCN needed to keep piling on the pressure to stop more cuts being made.

  • 1 Comment

Readers' comments (1)

  • south staffordshire PCT have pulled £3 million from the mental health budget they give south staffs and shropshire healthcare nhs foundation trust to provide mental ehalthcare in staffordhire.....result from this 7 day centres are shutting, a whole hospital in burton upon trent is going to close and specialist community teams have been abosrbed into functional communiyt mental health teams....there is some information..pass it on to mr campbell

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.

Related Jobs