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Closing the Gap: Priorities for essential change in mental health

In 2011, the government published its mental health strategy, No health without mental health. This set out our long-term ambitions for the transformation of mental health care – and more importantly, for a broad change in the way people with mental health problems are supported in society as a whole. The strategy was built around six unambiguous objectives:

• More people will have good mental health
• More people with mental health problems will recover
• More people with mental health problems will have good physical health
• More people will have a positive experience of care and support
• Fewer people will suffer avoidable harm
• Fewer people will experience stigma and discrimination.

This document supports all of those objectives – just as it supports the mental health strategy implementation framework and suicide prevention strategy, published in 2012. But the principles and many of the programmes described in those documents are about long-term change, at the population level.
The actions in the implementation framework, many of which are underway, focus on how local partners can work to achieve the long-term objectives, and how national organisations can support and enable them. They are about organisational change, working together, using the resources available. They remain central to our direction and ambition.