Deputy Prime Minister and Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg has pledged to establish a £50 million fund for research into mental health, according to The Daily Telegraph. Clegg, and his Lib Dem colleague Health Minister Norman Lamb, have pushed throughout this Parliament for mental health to be given ‘parity of esteem’ with physical health, arguing that people with mental health issues are often treated as “second class citizens”.
Such an injection of funds would see the amount spent on mental health research almost double, with the current amount estimated at around £74 million annually by The Mental Health Foundation and Institute for Psychiatry.
Pete from PSI: Fearful of the backlash they received over the tuition fee U-turn, the Lib Dems are unlikely to make any grand promises to the electorate as part of their 2015 manifesto. However, Norman Lamb’s work on mental health has been praised by commentators across the health spectrum, and it is likely that the party will also look to build on Lamb’s work with dementia sufferers as part of the 2015 manifesto.
The final draft of the Lib Dem manifesto is due to be presented at the Party Conference in October, to be voted on by members.