The cross-Government strategy reflects the determination of the Welsh Government to continue to improve the mental health of the country and further develop high quality, evidence based mental health services.
It aims to accelerate the momentum and achievements of recent years and will help to deliver the wider ambitions outlined in the Welsh Government’s Programme for Government and Together for Health and Sustainable Social Services for Wales; A Framework for Action.
A quarter of the population in Wales will experience mental health problems or mental illness at some point. It can affect anyone at any time of life and can have an enormous effect on family members, friends and work colleagues.
Physical and mental health are inextricably interlinked. Physical ailments can lead to deterioration in our mental wellbeing and equally, mental health problems can affect our physical health.
The focus of the strategy is on improving outcomes for service users, carers and their families. This is underpinned by the recovery and reablement approach, which aims to help people live independently and achieve their full potential.
Health Minister Lesley Griffiths said:
“We all recognise the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle but few of us take time to consider our mental health.
“The focus of Together for Mental Health is on improving outcomes for service users, carers and their families. At its very heart it embeds the Mental Health (Wales) Measure which places new duties on Health Boards and Local Authorities.
“The strategy aims to address the needs of people with mental health problems or a mental illness and improve mental wellbeing. It covers all ages and seeks to engage all sectors in Wales to deliver its ambitions.
“It highlights our need to tackle stigma and discrimination and to ensure vulnerable groups have equal access to care and treatment."
The Welsh Government will be consulting on the strategy for a period of 12 weeks. There will be a children and young people friendly version and an easy read version of the strategy. Consultation events will be held across Wales in June, aimed at service providers, service users and carers.