Properly funded and staffed NHS mental health services are vital if the UK is serious about supporting people with severe mental illness. We work to ensure government commitments like new models of community mental health care are delivered, and that care systems share resource and power with voluntary, community and social enterprise organisations to make it a reality.

The importance of Integrated Care Systems

An Integrated Care System is a partnership of organisations planning and delivering joined up care services. They allow health and care services to work together and improve people’s health and wellbeing.

In 2022, former Secretary of State for Health, Rt Hon Patricia Hewitt reviewed the success of Integrated Care Systems and made recommendations for the future.

We were delighted that Hewitt’s findings championed investment in Integrated Care Systems and strongly urged the government to listen.

Breaking barriers, transforming community mental health

Urging the government to act

Open letter to the Chancellor of the Exchequer

We believe in giving voice to people living with mental illness. When Jeremy Hunt was appointed Chancellor of the Exchequer in 2022, we teamed up with other mental health organisations to urge him to protect mental health in his forthcoming budget. Our open letter to Mr Hunt discussed how proposed cuts were leaving people anxious and repeated the urgency to invest in mental health care as demand is high. Read our open letter.

Responding to committees  

A Public Accounts Committee investigated whether the government has achieved value or money when expanding and improving NHS-funded mental health services. We responded with our views on to what extent this has been achieved. Read our response. 

We responded to the Lords Committee’s inquiry into integrating primary and community care, setting out our views on how integration can be done successfully and what some of the key challenges are. Read our response. 

Mental Illness and COVID-19 

The COVID-19 pandemic put a huge strain on mental health services. Many people with severe mental illness were hit hard by changes to their care – such as face-to-face care moving to phone calls and difficulties accessing medication. 

We were quick to respond to the government with recommendations including: