Theresa May needs to walk the walk on mental health, says Alastair Campbell

'The mental health stigma campaign cannot become a replacement for services', says Alastair Campbell

Theresa May spoke about mental health in a speech earlier this month

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

The Government's intentions around mental health services are good, but they underestimate the fact that it needs money, says Tony Blair's former spin doctor Alastair Campbell.

Campbell has published a piece in The Guardian entitled On mental health, the Tories need to put their money where their mouths are. He writes that despite the Conservatives speaking well about mental health, it is still slipping down the priority queue as pressure increases on spending.

Campbell, a former journalist who was at the heart of government during the Blair years, has suffered from depression himself and spoken about the subject on several occasions.

He told Sam Delaney: “My big worry, as I said in the piece, is the stigma campaign [which aims to get people talking about mental health without shame or inhibition] becomes a replacement for services.

“The services just aren’t there, the talk is there but the delivery is not there yet. The basic problem is a shortage of nurses, shortage of doctors and a shortage of places people can go.

"I’m not doubting [the Government's] intentions at all but I do think they underestimate the extent to which…a lot of it is about money."

Listen to the full audio above