Guide for older people’s mental health services launched

A new guide focussing on older people’s mental health for the NHS was launched today by the Department of Health.

The guide sets out what is expected of a modern mental health services and this includes training staff at all levels to effectively communicate with service users and building services around a person’s needs.

It also includes:-

• Eradicating age discrimination

• Providing users and their carers with information on their condition and consulting them about how their care plans are developed

• Developing services that are sensitive to a person’s cultural needs

• Commissioning that includes health and social care, the independent and voluntary sectors and users and carers

“”With 50 per cent of older people in hospital experiencing mental health problems it is clear that this is an area we must address,” said health minister Liam Byrne.

“We want to ensure that older people have their needs met wherever they are in the system, without encountering discrimination or barriers to access,” he added.

The guide is supported by a mapping programme that will collect information on older people’s mental heath services, their availability and how they are staffed.

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