Mental health is welcomed back on to the political agenda

The ACP was among a number of prominent signatories to an open letter published in the Guardian on Thursday this week in response to Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn's debut at Prime Minister's Questions. Read the letter in full below:

The prime minister’s acknowledgement in parliament of the importance of people being able to access psychological therapies for mental ill-health was heartening (Corbyn answers critics by asking the questions in a different way, 17 September). In response to the leader of the opposition’s question about mental health, David Cameron singled out cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT), which is just one of the talking treatments recommended for depression and anxiety by the National Institute for Health and Care and Excellence. Evidence shows that patients respond best and recover more frequently if they are able to have some choice about the kind of help they receive.
While the increasing availability of psychological therapy is to be lauded, we must press on with ensuring that we deliver help that meets the needs of all patients, as we are still failing to help nearly half the people being treated. Surveys also indicate that patients would welcome a greater choice of psychological therapies, so we would urge the government to ensure that choice of treatment is made a key priority for the coming parliament, which is reflected with additional funding in the forthcoming comprehensive spending review.

Gary Fereday British Psychoanalytic Council
Susanna Abse Chief executive, Tavistock Centre for Couple Relationships
Sue Mizen Chair, Royal College of Psychiatrists
Jamie Hacker Hughes President, British Psychological Society
Janet Weisz Chair, UK Council for Psychotherapy
Heather Stewart Chair, Association of Child Psychotherapists
Emer O’Neill Chief executive, Depression Alliance
Louise Chunn Founder, welldoing.org
Oliver James Psychologist and author
Andrew Reeves Chair, British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy
Professor Brett Kahr Senior clinical research fellow in psychotherapy and mental health, Centre for Child Mental Health
Susie Orbach Psychoanalyst and writer
Angela Drizi Trustee, International Society for Psychological and Social Approaches to Psychosis
Liz McEllicott Chief executive, National Counselling Society
Jeremy Clarke Albany Trust; Association for Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy in the NHS
Andrew Radford Chief executive, BEAT