Independent report

Chief Medical Officer annual report 2013: public mental health

CMO Professor Dame Sally Davies makes 14 recommendations to improve public mental health services.

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This report looks at the epidemiology of public mental health, the quality of evidence, possible future innovations in science and technology, and the economic case for good mental health.

It also outlines the importance of both treating mental health as equal to physical health and of focusing on the needs and safety of people with mental illness.

Highlights from the report include:

  • mental health is just as important as physical health, mental health services need to be valued and the scale of the burden of disease caused by mental illness needs to be acknowledged
  • more needs to be done to help people with mental illness stay in work, as since 2009, the number of working days lost to ‘stress, depression and anxiety’ has increased by 24% and the number lost to serious mental illness has doubled
  • there have been some very interesting technological innovations in mental healthcare and our understanding of the causes and development of mental illness is increasing through techniques such as neuroimaging, neuropsychology, genetics and blood-based biomarkers

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Published 9 September 2014