27 September 2022 – Mental Health Reform welcomes the allocation of an additional €72.8M for mental health services in Budget 2023. This investment represents the largest ever single-year commitment to funding for mental health services in the history of the state.
The funding includes €44M to maintain existing levels of service and €14M for new measures to support the implementation of Ireland’s national mental health policy, Sharing the Vision. The Government has also announced €15M in once-off funding for mental health services.
Róisín Clarke, Interim CEO, Mental Health Reform said: “We know that the cost of living crisis is having a significant impact on people’s mental health. The Government’s historic commitment of €72.8M in Budget 2023 recognises the need to support the mental health of the population during an extremely challenging period. This funding will be critical in addressing the deficits in our mental health system, reducing waiting lists and improving access to mental health care across Ireland.
While the investment falls short of the additional €100M we believe will be needed in 2023, we recognise that it is a pivotal step towards addressing the deepening mental health crisis facing our country.
We welcome the Government’s commitment to enhancing early interventions and improving access to person-centred services for children, young people and adults. Additional investment in approved mental health centres is an important measure that will help to improve the standard of care and mitigate the current inequities in the public health system.
We also welcome funding for additional employment and housing supports. As the cost of living crisis continues, these supports are crucial to preventing the risk of homelessness and poverty for people experiencing mental health issues.
We acknowledge the once-off cost of living measures for people in receipt of social protection payments, carers and people receiving disability allowance. While secure and sustainable multi-annual funding is key, these payments will provide much-needed relief for many people who face financial hardship.
We would like to recognise the positive developments in Budget 2023, and we look forward to continuing our work with our members to ensure the delivery of modern, recovery-oriented, high-quality mental health services in Ireland.
Mental Health Reform would like to acknowledge the dedication and commitment of Minister of State for Mental Health and Older People, Mary Butler and we look forward to hearing the detail of the allocation for mental health services in due course.”