To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to the NHS Long Term Plan goal that all children who need specialist mental health care can access it, what steps he has taken to ensure that the youngest children can access specialist mental health care.
7 June 2021
We remain committed to the aim of the NHS Long Term Plan to invest at least an extra £2.3 billion a year into mental health by 2023/24. This will see an additional 345,000 children and young people a year, including the youngest children, accessing NHS-funded mental health support by 2023/24, if they need it.
Commissioning mental health services for the youngest age groups is a local matter for clinical commission groups. However, the Government recently published it’s Early Years Review which is available at the following link:
Babies and the youngest children in England will get a better start in life following the publication of a review into reducing inequalities in the first 1,001 days of life. This includes every new parent and carer being able to access compassionate and timely mental health support if they need it. To implement this work, the Department will work with Public Health England, NHS England and NHS Improvement as well as local authorities to map out the Start for Life journey of parents and carers that captures how they experience digital, virtual and telephone-based services during the 1,001 critical days from conception to the age of 2. We will ensure parents and carers have an NHS-branded online ‘one stop shop’ to access all the information they need.