Budget investment in mental health services for young people welcomed by ISPCC

Budget Investment In Mental Health Services For Young People Welcomed By Ispcc
The charity said the creation of a new referral mechanism for child and adolescent mental health services is a particular positive.
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Muireann Duffy

The Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (ISPCC) has welcomed funds allocated to mental health services for children and young people in Budget 2024.

As part of €22.5 billion earmarked for the Department of Health, Minister of State for Mental Health Mary Butler confirmed a new central referral mechanism will be created for child and adolescent mental health services.


The junior minister said the new system will mean a 'no wrong door' approach, with the HSE first triaging referrals in order to direct people to the right services.

The ISPCC also praised the allocation of funding for the creation of a new mental health app, which it said will also signpost users to appropriate services and supports.

The charity added that the investment in mental health services announced in Budget 2024 is a welcome successor to funds announced in last year's budget.

"We recognise the systemic challenges our mental-health sector faces and believe these can only be overcome by a concerted effort among all stakeholders," the ISPCC's head of policy and public affairs Fiona Jennings said.


"The announcement of a triage service to help direct children and young people to appropriate services is hugely welcome and will go some way to alleviating waiting lists."

However, Ms Jennings noted that funding for mental health services is still "a long way off" the 10 per cent target of overall health spending by 2025.

The ISPCC added "there has never been a more important time than now to prioritise the mental health of young people", urging that children with complex needs should be a particular focus "and all efforts must be employed to ensure they do not slip through the cracks".

The ISPCC's Childline service can be reached online at Childline.ie or by calling 1800-66 66 66.

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