New agency for a new era in mental health

The new agency - the National Mental Health Development Unit - will succeed the current National Institute for Mental Health in England.

From April, the ten strategic health authorities will oversee much of the regional and local delivery of new mental health policies, with support from the new Development Unit.

The Development Unit will continue the momentum in co-ordinating support for key mental health projects such as:

* improving access to talking therapies;

* promoting equalities in mental health services for different groups, based on race, gender and age;

* promoting social inclusion and social justice for people with mental health problems;

* promoting well-being and mental health for the whole population; and

* supporting effective mental health commissioning.

The previous Care Services Minister said:

"The National Mental Health Development Unit will make sure that mental health services around the country continue to go from strength to strength.

"New Horizons and the Darzi review mean we must actively promote public mental health and well-being, as well as spreading best practice and maintaining world-class mental health services everywhere. The National Mental Health Development Unit will help us do this."