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Sharp rise in wait times for perinatal mental health care in England

Campaigners have expressed alarm at new analysis showing a sharp increase in new or expectant mothers waiting for mental health care, with one woman found to have waited 319 days for a first appointment.

More than 30,000 women who are pregnant or have newly given birth are on waiting lists for mental health support, according to NHS England data analysed by Labour, with the party saying many of them were being left to “suffer in silence”.

Amid rising demand for what are known as perinatal mental health services, during the period from August 2022 to March 2023 the numbers of women waiting rose by 40%. Over that same period, the numbers who accessed support also rose, but only by 8%.

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Source: Guardian, 4 September 2023


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