Thursday, 14 August 2014

Two-thirds of Britons with depression get no treatment

According to an article in the Guardian today,  there is no chance that the disparity in the NHS between  treating physical and mental health will diminish any time soon:

Professor Simon Wessely of King's College London, the incoming president of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, said there would be a public outcry if those who went without treatment were cancer patients rather than people with mental health problems. Imagine, he told the Guardian, the reaction if he gave a talk that began: "'So, we have a problem in cancer service at the moment. Only 30% of people with cancer are getting treatment, so 70% of them don't get any treatment for their cancer at all and it's not even recognised. ... If he were truly talking about cancer", he said, "you'd be absolutely appalled and you would be screaming from the rooftops."

A larger proportion of people with psychosis, who have severe mental illnesses such as schizophrenia, are on treatment, but even that figure is still only 65%, according to Wessely, who added: "That doesn't mean they are getting the right treatment or anything like that, but getting something. For most mental disorders it is still the exception not the rule to be recognised, detected and treated.

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