Sajid Javid recently gave a speech at the Global Mental Health Summit 2021. He spoke about how this year’s summit is the most vital to speak about mental health due to the recent Covid-19 pandemic. The pandemic has forced us all to change our normal routines, we were put under restrictions and limited to social contact that brings many people good mental health and happiness. The restrictions placed upon the world were very essential to stop the spread of the Covid-19 . However, this had a major strain on many of our mental health’s.
"Around 1 in 5 adults in Britain experienced some form of depression in the first 3 months of this year. That’s over double the figure before we started our fight against COVID-19. And almost half of adults have reported that their wellbeing has been affected by this pandemic."
"In the UK, children from the poorest 20% of households are 4 times as likely to have serious mental health difficulties by the age of 11 compared with those from the wealthiest 20% of households. We have to put this right."
To help those facing mental health issues, England has set up a 27/7 crisis helpline which since the beginning of the pandemic has had over 3 million calls. Mental health apps and virtual consultations were also provided for those seeking help.
Javid spoke about how even though there are more people coming out with their mental health issues there are still many that remain in silence. We should therefore try to eliminate the many stigmas that are attached to mental health.
"Our mission must be for mental health to be treated with the same urgency as physical health. After all, its effects can be just as harmful. Suicide accounts for one death around the world every 40 seconds and severe mental illness has been found to reduce life expectancy by 10 to 20 years"
To further support those suffering with mental health the government have committed an extra £2.3 billion a year until 2023 to help transform mental health services and help families, workplaces and communities in need. The Mental Health Act is also being reformed to ensure that individuals are treated with the respect that they deserve.
Javid closed his speech by saying we all need to come together and tackle the growing problem of mental health to ensure it gets the recognition and response that it needs.
To find out more please visit www.gov.uk/mental-health-a-decade-of-change-in-just-2-years