Long term conditions and mental health: the cost of co-morbidities

9 February 2012

The cost of co-morbidities

Chris Naylor, Michael Parsonage, David McDaid, Martin Knapp, Matt Fossey, Amy Galea

This report finds that the additional cost of treating long term conditions for those with depression and other mental health problems is between £8-13 billion a year. This cost is not just a financial one. Patients with a long-term condition and co-existing mental health issue face poorer clinical outcomes and a significantly lower quality of life than people with a physical health problem alone.  

The report concludes that the costs of caring for people with long-term conditions could be reduced if the NHS was to manage the mental health needs of these people more effectively and makes recommendations for a better understanding of the costs of co-morbidities, improvement in psychological literacy across the workforce and closer integration between primary care, hospitals and mental health services.

Audience: Commissioners, health services, mental health services.

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