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Grossly unfair public health spending is damaging children’s mental health care in Cumbria - MP

April 23, 2018 9:53 AM

Local MP Tim Farron has accused the Government of continuing to neglect the needs of Cumbria's children with mental health issues.

New figures show that the county is set to receive just £37 per head in Public Health Allocations over the next financial year, compared to the national average of £64.

Tim presenting the youth mental health petition to Andrew BennettThe figure, which is £20 less per head than what Lancashire receives, is also a stark contrast to the hefty sums received by a number of local authorities across London, with Westminster receiving £123 per head, while that figure is £131 in Kensington & Chelsea, and £179 per head in the City of London.

Last year, the school nurse system in Cumbria was axed as a result of cuts to public health budgets from the Government.

When Tim met with local mental health professionals in Lancaster last week, they said that the absence of a school nurse system was leading to local Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services becoming overburdened and children not receiving the care they need.

Recent figures show that Cumbria is in the top 10 worst areas for mental health waiting times, with young people having to wait 84 days on average to receive treatment.

Tim has written to the Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt to make the case for Cumbria to be given fairer funding for public health.

Tim said: "These figures are obviously grossly unfair, and the Government's decision to sell Cumbria short is having serious consequences.

"Losing the traditional school nurse system has left many young people in our area without the ability to receive support in familiar surroundings and has left our mental health crisis services deeply overburdened.

"For the sake of the mental health of our children, the Government must think again and give our county a fair deal."