Mental health report ‘exposes systemic failings’, says GSD
The Mental Health Board's report has exposed “systemic failings” in mental health administration and the treatment of patients, the GSD said yesterday.
The GSD has also called on the Gibraltar Government to provide an update on the steps taken to remedy these issues.
The party added the 2018/2019 report exposes “serious flaws” in the system on a wide range of issues from administrative failings, to the inadequate monitoring of patients on lithium, to potential human rights breaches.
They have also asked for further information on when the 2019/2020 is expected.
"The publication of the Annual Inspection Report raises serious issues about systemic failings in the administration and treatment of mental health in our community,” said Shadow Minister for Health Elliott Phillips.
“It is important that as a community we recognise where we excel and where we fail and to do that we need to have a honest and open debate on how we can address the deficit in mental health provision.”
The Leader of the Opposition, Keith Azopardi, wrote to the Chief Minister and Together Gibraltar to establish a cross party Select Committee on Mental Health to report on the improvements to mental health provision in Gibraltar.
The party has also called for a comprehensive mental health strategy and joined with the Gibraltar Mental Welfare Society in its request for the government to publish the full results of the mental health audit, “which they have failed to do despite repeated calls over the last 12 months.”
During the general election the GSD had pledged a “radical plan” to boost mental health services.
These plans included the introduction of a Care Quality Commission to independently monitor and audit mental health provision amongst other matters.
“During the General Election we proposed a clear policy which was designed to focus on an (i) A&E service for mental health, (ii) a specific budget for mental and (iii) a Care Quality Commission to name a few but without the raw data arising from the audit on our current provision and how it needs to improve, mental health will continue to be the Cinderella of the service,” Mr Phillips said.
“The Government must confront the reality of the failings and put the provision [of] mental health on par with physical health.”