Scottish Conservative and Unionist MSP Sue Webber for the Lothian Region says the number of children and young people waiting on mental health treatment in NHS Lothian is “totally unacceptable”.
Sue Webber MSP has highlighted new statistics from Public Health Scotland which showed that across Scotland at the end of March, over 2,000 young people had been waiting over a year to begin vital mental health support.
In NHS Lothian that included 1129 patients waiting over a year to begin treatment with 3,439 waiting in total at the end of March this year for mental health support.
Prior to the pandemic 2,608 young people were waiting to begin treatment, with Sue Webber MSP saying the new figures represent a shocking increase.
Sue Webber MSP says the pandemic and ongoing lockdown restrictions have heightened mental health issues for young people in NHS Lothian and has urged the SNP Government to ensure NHS Lothian have every resource they need to see vulnerable young people as soon as possible.
Scottish Conservative and Unionist MSP Sue Webber said: “These figures are totally unacceptable and lay bare the scale of the challenge we have in tackling the mental health crisis in NHS Lothian.
“Even prior to the pandemic, the SNP Government weren’t hitting targets for vulnerable young people to begin mental health treatment. That simply isn’t acceptable.
“The pandemic and ongoing lockdown restrictions have only heightened mental health issues for many in NHS Lothian and SNP Ministers must guarantee that the health board and local support organisations will have all the resources they need to see patients as soon as possible.
“My party will continue to push for 10 per cent of the budget to be spent directly on tackling mental health. We cannot continue to have so many young people in NHS Lothian waiting over a year to begin treatment.
“This situation cannot be allowed to spiral any further out of control and I will be a strong voice for urgent mental health support to be directed towards young people in NHS Lothian.”