Despite Government commitments to address unequal access to psychological therapies, evidence shows that current access rates and availability of psychological therapies among certain groups remain poor. People from black and minority ethnic (BME) communities, older people, children and young people, people with severe mental illness and homeless people with co-occurring substance misuse are still not able to get access to proven psychological therapies. There are also very high levels of need for psychological therapy among people with long-term physical conditions that are currently poorly met.
We are calling on NHS England to urgently introduce national access and waiting time standards so that everyone who needs it can access evidence-based talking therapies within 28 days of getting a referral, with quicker access for people experiencing a mental health emergency. The NHS Constitution should enshrine 28 days as the maximum waiting time from referral to first treatment. CCGs can also ensure that all groups have equal and timely access to psychological therapies.
Read the report at Mind.