Elizabeth Cotton – Precarious Work and Mental Health

Elizabeth Cotton has recently written on the Centre for Health and the Public Interest blog about precarious work and mental health.  The first paragraph is here, the full post can be found on the CHPI’s website here.

“One of the hidden factors driving the UK’s mental health services to its current tipping point is the working conditions of the people who deliver them. Mental health services have always been the poor cousin of the health family but with our health bodies, NHS England and Monitor, proposing that mental health services should face an additional 20% cut in funding those of us working in mental health should officially be concerned about our individual and collective states of mind. From Psychological Wellbeing Practitioners, Employment Advisors to community health workers, working in mental health care settings might be posing significant health risks to both clients and clinicians.

Psychotherapists offer us a graphic case study in the precarious work of the UK’s mental health services. An estimated 6,000 people a year qualify as counsellors and therapists and approximately 4000 clinicians have been trained to deliver Increased Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) services through the NHS. However we do not know how many people now work as psychotherapists, who their employers are and what their working conditions are like. According to the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) there is no data on psychotherapists who work for agencies and information on Bank staff (the NHS’s own agency) is only this year being collated, due to be available at the end of 2014.”

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