The National Audit Office Confers With Mental Health Powerholders and Not Patients

Unsurprisingly the surveyed integrated care board (ICB) mental health leads and mental health trusts tell the NAO what a great job they are doing.  The NAO also interviewed mental health stakeholder organisations such as the BPS and BMA. On this basis, the NAO [“Progress in improving mental health services in England”] declared last month, that ‘the government has achieved value for money’. The yardstick used by the NAO was whether the surveyed bodies ‘met ambitions to increase access, capacity, workforce and funding for mental health services’. No attempt to access the voice of the people. 

Interestingly the NAO did not even attempt to make the claim of the prime movers in IAPT Layard and Clark (2015) that the Service costs nothing, due to savings on welfare benefits and physical healthcare costs!  The response of the great and the good in mental health (the NHS Confederation, SANE and Mind) has been, that the report highlights the need for increased funding, to recruit and retain more staff. No awareness that more of the same is unlikely to make any difference to patients.


The report reveals that £752 million was spent on NHS Talking Therapies predecessor, IAPT, in 2021-22. But when the NHS acquired IAPT earlier this year no audit of the latter was conducted. No business would behave in this way. Yet the NAO report re-iterates the target of ‘at least 50% achieve recovery across the adult age group’. No mention that there is no independent evidence that this has ever been achieved. With the best evidence Scott (2018) suggesting that only the tip of the iceberg recover. What sort of auditors are the NAO? Under their watch acquisitions can be made without credible scrutiny.

In 2018 the NAO jettisoned an enquiry into the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) Programme. In response to a Freedom of Information request, the NAO responded on February 17th 2020 ‘We commenced work on the IAPT programme in 2017-18. However, the work on this programme was curtailed in June 2018 by the Comptroller and Auditor General (C&AG) of the time in response to changing priorities. The alterations to the work programme were made so that the C&AG could respond quickly on important topical issues, such as work on the UK’s exit from the European Union, the government’s handling of the collapse of Carillion, and on significant NHS spending increases in 2017- 18 on generic medicines in primary care’.

Dr Mike Scott

21 replies on “The National Audit Office Confers With Mental Health Powerholders and Not Patients”

Scie are doing surveys on social care but only the staff and not the clients as well.
Also I’m down for a bungalow. Housing aren’t letting me out my GPS supporting letter in. I’m lost it on the bus the other day ( had good reason) and they refused to give me the info to make a complaint. I get1 bus route and the bus driver who was nasty and changed the route mid journey when I couldn’t connect to other busses. When I had too much stuff to carry. ( I have spinal disability) has said she won’t let me on he bus. When it’s literally the only bus I can get.
I’ve been down for a safe guarding meeting near 2 months have been on the social services waiting list since October 2021. I have spoken to autism team but they are refusing to help me until I ge a bungalow. There have been no bungalows on the housing list ( and I mean 0 bungalows) for 7 weeks just flats with no pets, I can see Riverside and Gentoo are flogging off HA properties. I rang up to see about retirement housing ( I’m 53) they openly discriminated on me. Would not listen to my needs) then said to her mate in the office. I’ve got a lass on the phone who thinks the world owes her a living. This is the attitudes of sheltered housing dividers in Newcastle to stressed NDs. I have looked at at private bungalows to rent. The costs is £550 ( and only one). Social sevices say they aren’t responsible for the bus problem or the housing. A taxi for me costs £46 to Newcastle and back and around £55 to where I shop return. I don’t claim for mobility as I can walk 20 metres even though I have pain. I have OA spine , Skin issues, IBS, GERD, autism, more than likely ADHD ( my dr agrees) I don’t want to live with others as I have emotional dysregulation, PRSD, anxiety and stress. Drugs cause serious side effects( basically they put us down slowly) I need my own place with access to a functional bus service. I can see what the government is doing. Most of the bungalows was £750- £900 pcm, that would take all of my pip benefits and EDPand there would be no money for social services if I did get it. And all it takes is a failed PIP and we are homeless. This government must Think we are stupid. Politics is my autism specialist subject. This government is killing the disabled on benefits. Even the flats for rent, there was only five. In horrible areas. One there was a tow path n feild no fences. You could see kids would kick footballs off it. Which got folks like me is unbearable.
When I’m living n fear and feel trapped in a stress position and isolated and i can see them metaphorically setting up the structures to destitute us. They know I’m seeing it housing do , social services do, My GP is trying to help now. The receptionist accidently made my medical appointment at the wrong clinic. The people running the services most of them want us dead. We live in fascism and Nazism. The Nazis came got the disabled first two, psychologists are pushing for spirituality, im athiest, they want us to fantasise about heaven whilst they make us destitute and freeze to death. It’s hilarious how in there second offered meetings they state, mentally ill people and neuro divergent individuals. Are we not people. MH is a joke. I rang for duppirt got some posh guy who basically wanted to control me. Not listen and patronise me from Mind in Northumberland. That’s what they do. And all these services are saying housings not their problem, busses not their. Are they so se in their mo steroid ignorance ways not to see these things are wha causes mental I’ll health. I’m being isolated completely. Because want to silence my knowledge about the Nazi attitudes and politics of this country. I’m genuinely thinking of asylum seeking. All part of depopulation for the so called sustainable development. WEF, you will own nothing freze, live in a coffin or freeze to death attitudes of the established org. They truly are “ In it Together”
They have a cheek to label me as paranoid. Look at the politics behind the viciousness and violence being financially and psychologically meted out to people like me. I see it all. I read ONs the policies, the suicide Stats. I was at the MIND meeting on the DWP. I’m going to go to a meeting on UBI. But even that has its risks if peoples rents is £900. I was told the safe guarding would be 2 weeks that was 7 weeks ago. Autistics held in limbo is truly bad for our mental health. We can se how this government is dismantling everything. They don’t want us to have dupport they want profit from pharma and arms and they want us to die. They never take cuts. It’s always the workers. The rich have quadrupled their wealth since Covid, the working classes are dropping back to the 1930s . When the nhs and human rights go we are dead. We have 0 opposition and a 1 party state . Controlled by Israel and nato and the US and UK fascists. They are killing us. They know they are and they know we know and don’t care. They want to militarise the police and ban protest. I see all of it . Brics, the petro dollar is going to crash(We will become 3rd world) that’s what Ukraine is MIC and LNG sold to EU due to the NS pipeline. I see it all. That is my autodidactic speciality Health and Human Services and security runs the social service computer systems possibly the NHS ( these US companies) they cause all the wars. All networked, Israel speciality is Cyber security. They control most of the LP hence using anti semitism to kick Jeremy Corbyn out watch the Lobby and labour files. It’s all on the net. It’s very nasty. It’s way beyond just MH. I know all this and people wonder why my emotional dysregulation is through the roof as I listen to people around me talking rubbish and blaming people like me for economic collapse. Their bubbles are bursting they gotta keep filling them with hot air. That hot air is our lives now do you understand me.

“The yardstick used by the NAO was whether the surveyed bodies ‘met ambitions to increase access, capacity, workforce and funding for mental health services’.” To focus for a moment on access, the NHS Long-Term Plan ambition was for IAPT to give access to 25% of the community prevalence of common mental health disorders by 2020-21. The government’s own estimate for CMHD prevalence in England for 2017 was 16.9% of the adult population – 7,600,000. (OHID figures). Assuming prevalence has not fallen between 2017 and 2022, that gives an IAPT access ambition of 1,900,000 adults for 2021-22. In fact, 1,244,000 adults entered IAPT in that year, 664,000 finished a course of treatment, and 296,000 reliably recovered. In other words, only two thirds of IAPT’s access ambition started therapy, only one third finished a course of treatment and one sixth reliably recovered. If this qualifies as meeting access ambitions – well, I really don’t think many of the people suffering depression, anxiety and other common mental problems in the country are likely to agree.

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