Older people’s mental health ‘neglected’

Despite claims from the department of health that significant
progress has been made in implementing the national service
framework for older people, there are concerns that some services
are still being neglected, writes Katie

A report from the doh marking the second anniversary of the NSF
reveals an increase of 3,300 intermediate care beds and 2,000 fewer
delayed discharges.

But delegates at a conference to launch the report, many of whom
were ‘older people’s champions’, raised concerns about older
people’s mental health services.

One north London psychiatrist described older people with mental
health problems as “doubly stigmatised”, with services
for them taking second place to both services for young people with
mental health problems and services for older people with physical

“Older people who are mentally ill are at the bottom of
the pecking order when it comes to services and attitudes,”
she said.

Other keys findings from the progress report show that 98 per
cent of NHS trusts now provide single sex sleeping accommodation,
5,100 more people receive intensive home care, and the number of
direct payments has doubled.

Speaking at the launch, health minister Jacqui Smith said that
“much progress” had been made, and that those involved
could be proud of their achievements.

The full report is available here

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