Derek Wanless’s review of mental health is to put a cost on the full implementation of the government’s key policies for the sector, according to the think-tank that commissioned the inquiry.
Simon Lawton-Smith, senior research fellow at the King’s Fund, which commissioned the review, said it would probably cost three scenarios, in which future services were fully engaged with a range of good practice, partially engaged or remained the same as now.
The fully-engaged scenario would involve full compliance with the National Service Framework on Mental Health, recruitment of all the staff in the NHS plan and implementation of all the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence guidelines. Mental health services are currently not meeting some guidelines, such as the recommendation that all children with depression be offered talking therapy as a first treatment.
A recent report by the Sainsbury Centre for Mental Health said spending on mental health services would need to rise by 50 per cent to implement the NSF by 2011.
Wanless produced a review of the future costs of older people’s social care for the King’s Fund last year, which called for a significant increase in public and private funding of services.
Lawton-Smith accepted that the mental health review, which is expected to report in the autumn, would come out too late for this summer’s comprehensive spending review, which will set government spending limits from 2008-11. But he said he hoped it would influence the next one.