Supporting young people’s mental health

On 7 October 2019, we launched a new mental health programme and announced £35 million to support young people’s mental health.

  • For too long, mental illness has been a hidden injustice. We want to change this and transform mental health services so people can get the care they need and deserve.
  • That’s why we are launching a new programme to help people look after their mental health and investing £35 million to give more support to teenagers battling with mental health issues, including depression, anxiety, self-harm and eating disorders.
  • Mental health is a priority within our long-term plan for the NHS, and we will ensure that mental health support works better young people, ensuring they can look forward to a brighter future.

We are doing this by:

  • Investing £35 million into a new research programme to give more support to teenagers battling mental health issues. This programme will look at external tensions and genetics to ensure mental health problems are being treated as effectively as possible at this crucial age, while the brain is still developing.
  • Launching ‘Every Mind Matters’ to help people look after their mental health, improve their mental wellbeing and support others. The website will enable people to create a personalised action plan recommending a set of self-care actions to deal with stress, boost mood, improve sleep and feel in control.
  • Raising mental health funding to record levels to ensure everyone receives the care they need. We increased mental health funding by £500 million to a record £12.5 billion in 2018-19, and we are allocating at least £2.3 billion of the £33.9 billion funding boost to mental health, with funding growing as a share of the overall NHS budget over the next five years.
  • Supporting an additional 345,000 young people with mental health support. By 2023/24, 345,000 more young people will be able to access mental health services, and over the coming decade we aim to ensure that 100 per cent of children and young people who need specialist care can access it.

Key political point:

  • Labour offered less money for the NHS. Labour’s manifesto committed 2.2 per cent more a year, which they said would make the NHS ‘the envy of the world’. This is much less than our 3.4 per cent a year.

Q: Has mental health been a ‘Cinderella service’ for too long?
There’s no question about our commitment to mental health – we are investing more in mental health than ever before and our long-term plan for the NHS will initiate the largest expansion of mental health services in a generation, and these announcements build on that.