Budget 2021 a positive first step in meeting the countries mental health needs

Mental Health Reform, the national coalition on mental health, has today welcome the allocation of an additional €38M to mental health for the development of new services and €12M to support the provision of existing levels of service announced in Budget 2021.

Fiona Coyle, CEO of Mental Health Reform, said,

“There is no doubt about the scale of the challenges facing our health services and within that our mental health services. The Government’s commitment of €50M in Budget 2021 acknowledges the deepening mental health impact of this current pandemic. While the investment falls short of the €80M we believe will be needed in 2021, we recognise that it is a positive step towards improving access to mental health services, in line with our new national mental health policy Sharing the Vision.

It is now imperative that this investment leads directly to increased capacity in our mental health services, and makes a meaningful difference to those who need support. It is therefore critical that the full €38M of development funding allocated to mental health is used exclusively for new developments. We understand that the cost to the HSE of maintaining existing levels of mental health services for 2021 may be well beyond the €12M set out by Government. Development funding cannot be used to shore up those gaps, as has happened consistently in the past.”


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