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Hume backs charity calls for mental health action

December 15, 2014 1:49 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Scottish Liberal Democrats have said that urgent action must be taken to put health boards back on track towards meeting crucial mental health waiting time targets.

Mental health charity SAMH today expressed their disappointment that only four out of 14 health boards are meeting the target for 90 percent of patients to be seen within 18 weeks. The new target is due for delivery by health boards from this month.

In NHS Lothian only 43.1 percent of patients started treatment within the 18 week target, where the average treatment time was 21 weeks.

Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesperson Jim Hume MSP said:

"Urgent action must be taken to put health boards back on track towards meeting this crucial target. With only four health boards meeting the target SNP ministers must find out why it is not being met and do everything in their power to ensure it can be.

"The new mental health minister should listen to the warning from SAMH that longer waiting times for mental health treatment could have a detrimental impact on patients. This is why the Scottish Liberal Democrats are asking the Scottish Government to enshrine in law equality in treatment between mental and physical ill health."