“Beat, the UK’s eating disorder charity, welcomes the Prime Minister’s speech today about mental health. For too long mental health has been underfunded and the results of this lack of investment are clear to see; right now, we are letting people with eating disorders down. We strongly hope that this pledge from the Government today shows their true commitment to prioritising mental health.
“We recognise that there are many parts of the NHS that are under tremendous pressure but if the Government is serious about parity of esteem they must show it. We need to see proper funding of mental health with money spent on the frontlines not siphoned off to other parts of the NHS.
“The publication of waiting times for children with eating disorders in April are an important indicator of the Government’s commitment to tackling mental illness and we are expecting results. We expect the Government to ensure that no part of the country continues to fail young people with eating disorders.
“We are pleased to hear of the training in schools, the workplace and communities to increase knowledge and understanding of mental illness, including eating disorders. The sooner someone with an eating disorder receives the treatment they need the more likely they are to make a full and fast recovery. We will support the Government in any way we can on this important initiative.”
Please note you can also find Beat’s media guidelines here.
Tom Quinn is available for further comment as are our media volunteers – individuals who are recovered or in recovery from their eating disorder and are happy to speak to the media about their experiences.
An example is Amy. Amy was 14 when she first went to the doctors with her eating problems and was told to go to the gym. Although she continued to seek treatment she was told her weight wasn’t low enough for the treatment available. At 21 she was rushed to A&E with heart failure but still wasn’t able to access specialist eating disorder treatment. Once her BMI hit a dangerous level at which point she was offered treatment miles away from her home and was discharged once her weight had been ‘restored’ even though she still felt mentally unwell. Amy said “If I had been treated early it would not have got to the stage it did. Furthermore, if I had gotten more funding my future would have been easier- I feel I needed more longer treatment to really recover as I still suffer now.”