Response 13878744

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Questions

1. Our framework sets out 8 priorities for a new Mental Health Strategy that we think will transform mental health in Scotland over 10 years. Are these the most important priorities?

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If no, what priorities do you think will deliver this transformation?
There needs to be a separate focus on adolescent mental health - rather than it being lumped together as children/young people. Current evidence suggests this is increasing significantly, particularly in relation to depression & anxiety in teenage girls. Current support it patchy, difficult to access & not focused enough. This needs to be considered as a separate priority - as failure to address this has potentially serious consequences in the long term for Scotland's overall mental health wellbeing.

2. The table in Annex A sets out a number of early actions that we think will support improvements for mental health.

Are there any other actions that you think we need to take to improve mental health in Scotland?
Not enough focus on actions for adolescents- it's too vague & generic, with a danger it won't get any focus. There's a need to be proactive here - not just responsive. There's the opportunity to be innovative here - social media has been identified as a potential cause of the current rise in anxiety & depression in adolescent girls. Scotland could lead the way in looking at ways of using social media to support teenagers in difficulty - we can't get them to put down their phones, so let's use them to support our young people instead. Investment here would lead to less referrals to an already overburdened cahms service.

3. The table in Annex A sets out some of the results we expect to see.

What do you want mental health services in Scotland to look like in 10 years' time?
Easy access to mental health support - clear pathways of how to get the right level of support. Less of the current sticking plaster approach, but making sure people get the support they need before the crisis - not just the patchy support after. I want Scotland to be recognised as a leader in mental health initiatives.