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Charity calls for mental healthcare safeguards

13th September 2006

Mental health charity the Mental Health Foundation has called for government action to safeguard mental health services.

According to a recent survey from public services union Amicus, mental health budgets are in danger of being cut to cover the NHS's current financial uncertainties.

Charities and experts are concerned that mental health services and jobs are seen as easy targets for cuts.

"Mental ill-health currently costs the UK almost £100 billion a year and with depression set to be the second largest health burden after heart disease by 2020, this figure is set to increase," Andrew McCulloch, chief executive of the Mental Health Foundation, told Connects.

"Mental health must not suffer at the hands of a cash-strapped NHS," he asserted.

Recent reports have pointed to a rise in rates of depression among UK children and teenagers.