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Government must spell out how mental health will achieve parity with physical health, say MPs

BMJ 2016; 354 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.i5135 (Published 21 September 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;354:i5135
  1. Adrian O’Dowd
  1. London

The UK government’s drive to give mental health the same level of resources and attention as physical health is highly unrealistic, say MPs, given the current restraints on the NHS budget in England.

MPs on the parliamentary public accounts committee published a report on 21 September,1 in which they praised the intention to give mental health parity with physical health but raised numerous concerns about how this could be achieved.

They have recommended that the Department of Health and NHS England come up with detailed plans by April next year spelling out the exact costs, how spending should be prioritised, and the extra workforce needed to deliver the policy. The organizations should also develop an effective strategy to integrate health services …

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