Rethink Mental Illness welcomes new NHS waiting times for mental health services

11 March 2019

The NHS have today announced that it will respond to emergency mental health needs within one hour under new national standards. For people accessing emergency mental health services in the community, it will be 24 hours.

The new standards will be tested this year across various pilot sites. In its long-term plan, NHS England said the targets would be introduced by 2020.

Brian Dow, deputy CEO at Rethink Mental Illness said:

“Today’s announcement is the clearest signal yet that the treatment of mental and physical illness are being seen as equal priorities. This is the first time that we have seen crisis care waiting times introduced for people severely affected by mental illness, and we welcome NHS England’s ambition in doing so.

“Our recent report, Right Treatment Right Time, where we called for the introduction of waiting times, found that those most severely affected by mental illness are often waiting the longest to get treatment. We hope that today’s announcements by the NHS will begin the process to seeing that this no longer happens.”

For more information contact the Rethink Mental Illness media team on 0207 840 3138