Extent of mental health crisis in England at ‘terrifying’ level
England is “in the grip of a mental health crisis” because of the Covid pandemic, with under-18s suffering the most, psychiatrists are to warn on Friday.
Record numbers of children and adults sought NHS help last year for problems such as anxiety, depression and eating disorders, or because they ended up in a mental health crisis.
The Royal College of Psychiatrists has highlighted the sharp rise in mental ill health, that began after the first lockdown in March 2020, in an analysis of NHS and Office for National Statistics data. The college said NHS services were struggling to cope with the demand.
Adrian James, the college’s president, said: “The extent of the mental health crisis is terrifying, but it will likely get a lot worse before it gets better. Services are at a very real risk of being overrun by the sheer volume of people needing help.”
People under the age of 18 have been particularly badly affected, and delays in accessing care are worsening.
The analysis by the college found that:
In 2020, between April and December, 372,438 under-18s …
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