NHS pledge to focus on young people’s health

10 January 2019

Children and young people’s health has been set out as a priority in NHS England’s new long-term plan published Monday 7th January. It will see the introduction of a new transformation programme over the next decade.  


The programme will oversee delivery of commitments for the next 10 years, from bringing mental and physical care together to services for up to 25 years so that care is timely and continuous. 

The NHS long-term plan aims to save almost half a million more lives with practical action on major killer conditions and investment in world-class, cutting-edge treatments including genomic tests for every child with cancer. 

NHS England promises its biggest ever investment in mental health services rising to at least £2.3bn a year by 2023-24. 

This will be the first time in NHS history that primary, community and mental health services have been guaranteed investment rising faster than the overall NHS budget.

Over the next decade, an extra two million people who suffer from anxiety and depression will receive help, including new dads as well as mums, and will benefit from 24-hour access to crisis care via NHS 111. 

Through expansion of community-based services, including schools, 350,000 more children and young people will be given mental health support. 

The NHS will also be the first health service in the world to offer DNA tailored cancer treatment for children and young people who have a rare genetic disorder, in addition to adults suffering from rare conditions or specific cancers. 

The new treatments will be introduced alongside cutting-edge testing services that will allow three-quarters of cancer patients to be diagnosed early, saving around 55,000 lives a year says NHS England. 

Described as a ‘blueprint to make the NHS fit for the future’ the plan vows to spend an extra £4bn a year on a range of services, including improvements in neonatal care for new parents and babies. 

President of the RCPCH, Professor Russell Viner, said: ‘Today’s announcement lays the foundations for an NHS with infants, children and young people at its core.’

He continued: ‘This is a powerful vision for the future, but it cannot be achieved without significant investment and expansion in the child health workforce. It is encouraging to see this acknowledged by NHS England, but the workforce implementation plan needs to be produced without any delay.’ 

Image credit | Shutterstock


Author: Nicole Bains