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Mental Health Services

Question for Department of Health and Social Care

UIN 15419, tabled on 14 June 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to tackle mental health issues in men; and how many people have accessed mental health services, by gender in each of the last three years.

Answered on

21 June 2021

We know that men are less likely to seek help or talk about mental health issues and the National Suicide Prevention Strategy highlights men, especially middle-aged and young men, as a group at high risk of suicide. Every local authority now has a multi-agency suicide prevention plan in place and we are working with local government to assure the effectiveness of those plans. We have issued guidance to local authorities that highlights the importance of working across all local services, including the voluntary sector, to target high risk groups such as men.

We are expanding and transforming mental health services through the NHS Long Term Plan, to ensure that 380,000 more adults can access psychological therapies by 2023/24. For those with severe needs or in crisis, all National Health Service mental health providers have established 24 hours a day, seven days a week urgent mental health helplines.

The following table shows numbers of referrals and starts for Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) services and numbers in contact with secondary mental health, learning disability and autism services in each of the last three years for which data is available.

Year* and gender**

Number of people in contact with NHS-funded secondary mental health, learning disabilities and autism services

Number of referrals to IAPT services

Referrals entering treatment for IAPT services

2019-20

2,878,636

1,694,790

1,165,653

Males

1,347,739

584,151

398,153

Females

1,479,739

1,094,413

761,270

2018-19

2,726,721

1,603,643

1,092,296

Males

1,310,418

561,121

378,602

Females

1,403,057

1,026,442

707,910

2017-18

2,510,745

1,439,957

1,009,035

Males

1,207,679

508,477

351,017

Females

1,295,791

918,305

653,308

Notes:

*The number of providers submitting data has increased over the 2017-18 to 2019-20 period, which may account for some of the increase in rates.

** Gender subtotals do not add up to the total number of people because the total includes those for whom gender was invalid or missing.