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Mind in Haringey meets Tottenham MP David Lammy to criticise lack of support for mental health services
A mental health charity has raised concerns about the lack of resources to treat people in the borough suffering with mental illness.
Mind in Haringey, based in Stapleton Hall Road, Stroud Green, has said the number of people with mental health problems in Haringey is set to double in the next 20 years.
Anita Hudson, the chief executive of the mental health charity, told Tottenham MP David Lammy that there are currently 11,000 people in the adult population alone in Tottenham who need access to mental health services.
And she warned there was a lack of mental health services in the east of the borough and as a result 64 per cent of the people who use Mind in Stroud Green are from Tottenham.
People with mental health problems on average have fewer qualifications and find it harder to both obtain and stay in work.
Ms Hudson added that there is a significant risk to teenagers as symptoms of mental illness can begin by the age of 14.
But getting help can take a long time. Speaking to the Haringey Independent. Ms Hudson said: “The NHS has a six-month waiting list for their counselling service and we have a four-month waiting list for ours.
“This year alone we have had a £70,000 cut to our funding but we have more people than ever wanting to use our service.
“We get some very desperate people coming to us for help and we have to turn them away because we just don’t have the resources to help them.”
Yesterday it was revealed that St Ann’s Hospital, in St Ann’s Road, was using unfurnished rooms meant for dangerous patients to keep patients because of a lack of bed space.
Ms Hudson criticised the plans for the redevelopment for the hospital, which will see the number of bedrooms reduced from 50 to around 35.
She said: “They don’t have enough beds for the patients they have now so how can they hope to cope when they reduce the number of beds available.
“It’s like me getting married and planning to have kids but at the same time I move into a one bedroom house which I plan to live in for the next ten years.”
After Friday’s meeting Mr Lammy said it is imperative the borough is able to deliver quality mental health care and support for those affected.
He said: “Existing services, including community outreach services have been hit hard by Government cuts, and health service budgets are increasingly stretched.
“I am particularly concerned by the issues raised by a recent Care Quality Commission report which highlighted bed shortages at St Ann’s hospital.
“I shall be meeting with the senior leadership team of the Mental Health Trust in the very near future.”
The Tottenham MP added that he will meet with the Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health Trust, the Clinical Commissioning Group and Haringey Borough Council to discuss plans for mental health care in his constituency.
He said: “With a number of mental health patients in Tottenham facing difficulties with income and housing, it is vital we put the measures in place now to support our most vulnerable residents.”
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