Everyone’s mental health and emotional wellbeing remains a key priority for Health and Social Care (HSC) and our partners in the community, voluntary and independent sector during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.
Health and Social Care (HSC) mental health services remain safe and accessible for anyone who needs them across all HSC Trusts in Northern Ireland.
The Department of Health in May 2020 published its Mental Health Action Plan as part of his commitment to improve the mental health of the population in Northern Ireland. The Action Plan contains 38 actions, including a commitment to produce a mental health strategy, which will include a comprehensive funding plan for mental health. There is also a plan on dealing with the continued response to the Covid-19 crisis. You can access the Mental Health Action Plan on the DoH website.
Within Mental Health Services, including addiction services and psychological therapies, planning continues to consider both the safest and most effective ways to deliver these critical services as the Covid-19 pandemic remains in the community and building on emerging innovative approaches.
The process for increasing mental health services over the coming months will be guided by the need to:
In particular, consideration is being given to how to meet the challenge of the likely increase in demand for mental health services linked to COVID-19 and recognising that very significant capacity challenges were faced by mental health services before the onset of COVID-19.
If you are concerned about your mental health or someone you know is in crisis, contact your GP. The Lifeline 24hr counselling service is available at 0808 808 8000. If you are in immediate danger always call 999.
A range of mental health and emotional wellbeing resources are also available at www.mindingyourhead.info including a range of health and care apps and free stress control classes.