We comment on the government's response to the Hewitt Review
15 June 2023
Integrated Care Systems bring together local agencies to improve the health of people in the area. Commenting on the government’s response to the Hewitt Review on Independent Care Systems, Mark Winstanley, Chief Executive of Rethink Mental Illness, said:
“We’re pleased to see government endorse the fact that Integrated Care Systems (ICSs) are the way forward, building alliances of organisations that work together to improve the health of their local population. This represents a positive shift away from the principle of relying solely on local NHS services to provide all the support people severely affected by mental illness need to have a good quality of life.
“In its response to the Hewitt Review the government has rightly recognised that prevention is key, but we call on it to reinstate the commitment for a cross-government plan that would address the drivers of mental illness. While we also welcome recognition of the need for measures such as the Mental Health Investment Standard to ensure there is adequate funding for mental health, there needs to be greater local accountability and minimum expectations for mental health spend to ensure it is the priority it needs to be and that local services can meet the rising tide of demand for support.
“The government’s response to the Hewitt report confirms that this is the right direction of travel and that the development of ICSs should continue, but the test will be whether systemic change supports the development of ICSs and that they have the resource they need to deliver on their promise so that people severely affected by mental illness can get the support they need.”