Health Minister, Vaughan Gething, has today (8 September) announced additional mental health support that anyone in Wales can access when they need to.
The package is supported by £1.3m Welsh Government funding and includes a new online Cognitive Behaviour Therapy course and other online and phone support services.
Mr Gething said:
“Surveys by the Office of National Statistics and Public Health Wales have shown that levels of anxiety rose at the start of the coronavirus pandemic, and have remained higher than usual during lockdown.”
NHS Wales and partners already provide some phone and online-based mental health support but today’s announcement will extend what is already available and provide a new online Cognitive Behavioural Therapy course, that anyone aged 16 or over can access.
SilverCloud offers support for a range of issues including anxiety and depression. The national pilot of the programme is being evaluated to test usability and effectiveness, building on previous work led by Powys Local Health Board which so far has supported over 3,000 people.
The Welsh Government is committed to supporting the mental health of the public, and we have ensured this package of additional measures are in place ahead of any potential second wave this winter and as the impact of the pandemic is felt more widely. These services are aimed at helping low level mental health issues; they are not a replacement for more specialist services but we hope by providing instant access to support they will help reduce pressure on primary care and other more specialist services.”
SilverCloud is an online course which offers support for anxiety, depression, and much more, all based on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT). Anyone aged 16 or over can sign up at nhswales.silvercloudhealth.com/signup/.
Other support measures already available and further supported by the £1.3m funding package are:
CALL Mental Health Listening Line
Provides a confidential mental health listening and emotional support line which is open 24/7. CALL can also signpost to support in local communities and a range of online information. Call 0800132737, text “help” to 81066 or visit callhelpline.org.uk/.
Beat eating disorders helpline
Beat provides helplines and information for adults and young people, offering a supportive environment to talk about eating disorders and how to get help. Call 0808 801 0677 or visit https://www.beateatingdisorders.org.uk/support-services.
Mind Active Monitoring
Provides six weeks guided self-help for, anxiety, depression, self-esteem, and more. To get started, talk to your GP, any other health professional, or sign up directly at: https://www.mind.org.uk/get-involved/active-monitoring-sign-up/active-monitoring-form/
Activate Your Life
The “ACTivate Your Life” online video course shares practical ways to cope with thoughts and feelings causing distress and help live life with more confidence. To start go to phw.nhs.wales/activateyourlife.
Young Person’s Mental Health Toolkit
The Young Person’s Mental Health Toolkit links young people, aged 11 to 25, to websites, apps, helplines, and more to build resilience. You can access the toolkit at bit.ly/ypmhten.
Diverse Cymru’s support
Diverse Cymru provides support, services and advice to Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) people throughout Wales who are affected by mental ill health. You can find out more about our BME Mental Health work here.
We have also tailored a list of COVID-19 resources for mental health and well-being here – including COVID-19 guidance in 62 languages, positive mental health tips in 17 languages, and factsheets on BAME women, mental health, and COVID-19.