Children's mental health

Fresh early support hub funding welcome but more needs to be done for children’s mental health, says NHS

New funding has been announced by the government for early support hubs in a bid to help children and young people tackle their mental health issues earlier, and reduce pressure on NHS services.

Last October saw the government announce early support hub funding to the tune of £4.92m which is now being bolstered further by an additional £3m.

Last year’s funding was ringfenced for 10 hubs, but this extra investment will help expand the number of hubs benefitting across the country to 24.

Designed for those aged 11-25, the hubs are for those who do not qualify for NHS support but want guidance on everything from mental health and sexual health, to exam worries and financial struggles.

A network of 70 early support hubs already exists across the country, with services being run by a mixture of volunteer organisations, NHS trusts, and local authorities.

Maria Caulfield comment

While the extra support is welcome, NHS Providers’ deputy chief executive, Saffron Cordery, has urged the government to do more for children’s mental health.

"Too many children and young people and their families face long waits for mental health and community health services vital for their wellbeing and development,” says Cordery.

She adds that demand in the mental health sector is at a record high, with more than two million people on the waiting list.

Cordery explains: "We need a more joined-up, cross-government approach with equal national focus on community and mental health services to support children and young people as early as possible."

The Department of Health and Social Care highlights that progress is being made to support more children and young people.

The government says investment in NHS mental health services has increased from around £11bn in 2015/16 to nearly £16bn in 2022/23.

An extra 345,000 children and young people will also benefit from a further funding injection of £2.3bn a year by next month, which is expected to help an additional two million people overall access mental health support.

Image credit: iStock

NHE March/April 2024

NHE March/April 2024

A window into the past, present and future of healthcare leadership.

- Steve Gulati, University of Birmingham 

More articles...

View all
Online Conference


2024 Online Conferences

In partnership with our community of health sector leaders responsible for delivering the UK's health strategy across the NHS and the wider health sector, we’ve devised a collaborative calendar of conferences and events for industry leaders to listen, learn and collaborate through engaging and immersive conversation. 

All our conferences are CPD accredited, which means you can gain points to advance your career by attending our online conferences. Also, the contents are available on demand so you can re-watch at your convenience.

National Health Executive Podcast

Ep 42. Leadership in the NHS

In episode 42 of the National Health Executive podcast we were joined by Steve Gulati who is an associate professor at the University of Birmingham as well as director of healthcare leadership at the university’s Health Services Management Centre.