The following press release is published on behalf of the Gibraltar Mental Welfare Society:
The Gibraltar Mental Welfare Society would like to welcome Minister Sacramento’s announcement regarding the implementation of the new Crisis Pathway. The Society is very pleased to learn of this, given that it has campaigned for easy access to mental health support for years. Having a single number to call for anybody wishing to access help sounds like a major step forward. This should put an end to the confusion and frustration that so many service users and relations have experienced for decades.
Having said this, the Society is well aware that the system will only work if the necessary professionals are available to provide the early appointments required. Only within the last two weeks we have been approached by an individual who has been trying to access help since January, and who has still not been seen, and another who has been told that they have to wait 8 months to see a psychologist, even though they have a diagnosed disorder and are presently going through a very difficult time. One can only hope that it will be possible to provide the necessary service with the same human resources that are already available. In order not to stretch the service anymore than it already is, it is imperative that the Clinical Psychologist´s post in Ocean Views is filled and also that of Child psychology- a service which is seriously overstretched too. We look forward to seeing how the Crisis Pathway will work in practice.
The Society was also very relieved to hear from Minister Sacramento that service users in Ocean Views are going to be offered many more structured activities.. This has been a long time coming and is therefore a very welcome prospect. We look forward to hearing more about these innovations.
The Society is encouraged by these steps towards better provision in the mental health service, based on some of the core recommendations in the Audit. It reminds the public that there were forty eight recommendations in all. The Society will continue to lobby the Government until all of these are implemented.