Mental health monies ring-fenced in draft Assembly Government budget

In its draft budget for the next three years the Assembly Government has said that mental health services will be protected from funding cuts.

While the budget will bring reductions in many areas of public spending, the Government states that it will continue to prioritise spending on mental health services and that “approximately 12% of total NHS funding is ring-fenced for mental health services, and we will provide investment to support the implementation of the proposed Mental Health (Wales) Measure.”

Health and Social Services as a whole “has been protected from any cash reductions in its budget in 2011-12 and 2012-13 and receives a small cash rise in 2013-14,” and the Assembly Government says that this level of protection “reflects our commitment to ensuring the provision of frontline services across Wales.”

Bill Walden-Jones, Chief Executive of Welsh mental health charity Hafal, said: “It is reassuring that the Assembly Government has confirmed that funding for mental health services is ring-fenced and that spending on mental health services remains a priority.

“We need to ensure that Local Health Boards and other providers of mental health services live up to the Assembly Government’s promise. Our Members assure us that they will not be silent if any cuts are felt by frontline services.”

To view the Assembly Government’s draft budget please click here.