‘We can do so much better to cut mental health waiting lists’, says Tony Lloyd

Rochdale MP, Tony Lloyd, is backing Labour’s plans to tackle long mental health waiting lists. Since 2010, the Conservative Government have cut one-in-four mental health beds across the country, as waiting times for treatment have soared. Across Greater Manchester, there were 23,510 children on waiting lists in December and 89,250 adults. 

Tony said, “These figures show how much adult and children in Rochdale are suffering after 13 years of Conservative government. Children should not be languishing in A&E because they can’t receive treatment in the community. It’s a scandal that the Tories won’t solve. 

“The next Labour Government will prioritise a preventative plan for mental health services and will put patient care first. There must be access to mental health professionals in every school and an open access hub in every community, funded by closing tax loopholes. 

“This is in addition to guaranteeing mental health treatment within a month for all who need it, by recruiting thousands of new mental health staff.” 

Many mental health services are at breaking point after 13 years of Conservative Government – staff are overstretched, and NHS services have been neglected for over a decade. The result is that hundreds of thousands of people are turned away from services without having any treatment. Across Greater Manchester in December, 31,405 referrals were closed before the patient received any treatment, a staggering number. Labour has a plan to tackle these problems, by recruiting thousands more mental health staff, guaranteeing treatment within a month, providing access to a mental health professional in every school. 


Notes to editors: 

Latest IAPT referrals closed before treatment is found broken down by Sub ICB here.  

Numbers have been calculated by adding together all the sub ICB numbers for each areas using the following metrics: 





For Children and Adults on waiting lists, NHS Digital data can be found here

The total per annum cost of Labour mental health policy package by 2028/29 (the last year of Labour’s first term in office) would be an estimated £1.016bn. This will be paid for through the following fiscal measures: 

-Scrapping the “carried interest loophole”, a tax loophole enjoyed by a small number of private equity fund managers, which would raise £440 million per annum to fund an expansion in the mental health workforce. 

-Levying VAT on private school fees, which would raise £1.7bn per annum in total, £576m of which would be used to fund mental health hubs and specialist mental health support in schools.