Looking to the future of mental health
South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience (IoPPN) at King’s College London and the Maudsley Charity have shared a new vision to create a healthier and happier society for future generations.
Combining the expertise, dedication and energy of world-leading clinicians and scientists, the ambition is to see all children entering adulthood in good mental health. The issue of young people’s mental health is at a pivotal moment. One in 10 children or young people in the UK now have a clinically diagnosable mental health disorder and we are approaching endemic public health proportions. At the same time, the partnership is on the cusp of being able to transform our understanding, identification and treatment of mental health problems in children and young people.
The shared vision is to create a healthier and happier society for future generations. To help achieve this step change in the mental health of children and young people and develop real world impact, the partners are proposing:
- an ambitious programme of research and clinical innovation focused on Mother and Baby, Healthy Brain Development and Contemporary Childhood
- creating a new child-friendly clinical and academic centre, co-locating staff working across these areas together with patients, accelerating the time it takes from research to clinical practice to effect change
- sharing findings through outreach, education, policy change, partnerships, the media and digital technologies.
Dr Matthew Patrick, Chief Executive at South London and Maudsley, said:
We know that if we intervene early we have the opportunity to change the trajectory of many lives – whether its early prevention and resilience training in primary schools or new treatments that prevent children entering adulthood with serious mental health problems. Focusing on children and young people’s mental health has therefore been identified as a key strategic priority for our organisations.
Professor Ian Everall, Executive Dean at the IoPPN at King’s College London, said:
In recent years it has become recognised that brain development and optimal mental health across the lifespan are determined by events in the earliest years. We need to understand this process more fully. Our partnership with South London and Maudsley to deliver this ambition will reduce the length of time from discovery to use in the clinic.
The Maudsley Charity is the third part of this collaboration. They will play a major role in helping us to generate support for our ambitious project and develop a successful public fundraising appeal.
The King’s Health Partners Child and Adolescent Mental Health Clinical Academic Group includes local, national, specialist outpatient and inpatient services.