Georga Godwin, from national law firm Scott-Moncrieff, represents clients with serious mental health issues and their families. She says her clients are victims of a vicious circle of under-funding. She says: “The Government claiming that social efforts are more important than providing extra money for services is simply wrong. The NHS mental health offer is drastically under-funded and it suffers the vicious circle, knock-on effect of the rest of the NHS being under-funded, too.
“For example, Scott-Moncrieff has clients that have been discharged from section who agree to stay in hospital until appropriate after-care is available but who are then discharged by the hospital because their bed is needed for non-mental health care. They then end up back in hospital because of the appalling situation they find themselves in in the community, because they were discharged before a care regime was set up.
“While a ‘social effort’ with employers, schools and the like will help, that is not the primary issue. It is the lack of care, beds and planning that goes into mental health patients’ issues and at the heart of this is funding.”