Call for investment in psychological therapy

An expert has called for increased investment in psychological studies after research found cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) can be a more effective treatment for social anxiety disorder than antidepressants.

Evan Mayo-Wilson, a research scientist at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, believes the findings demonstrate the need for more resources to go towards this type of care, as it could improve people's quality of life, increase their productivity at work and reduce healthcare costs.

"The healthcare system does not treat mental health equitably, but meeting demand simply isn't a matter of getting insurers to pay for psychological services," he commented.

Mr Mayo-Wilson argued that the infrastructure to treat mental health problems needs to be improved, with more offices, support staff, experienced supervisors and additional programmes to train clinicians.

The findings of the study, which was carried out in partnership with Oxford University and University College in London, were published in The Lancet Psychiatry.

The British Psychological Society is a member of the We Need to Talk Coalition. This group of mental health charities, professional organisations, Royal Colleges and service providers campaigns for people with mental health problems.

We Need to Talk has called on the next government to invest in psychological therapies, so that the NHS in England can offer a full range of evidence-based psychological therapies for people with mental health problems.

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