People living with mental health conditions in England are being assured that last year’s £1billion pledge to increase access to vital services is filtering through. 

NHS England say the increased sum ring-fenced for mental health is being spent and is “on track”, one year into its five year plan. 

Mental health investmentThe £1billion target, originally published in February 2016 through the five-year forward view for mental health, has come under scrutiny again this week.

Freedom of Information Act data published by Pulse Magazine revealed five regional commissioning groups (CCGs) have in fact cut their mental health budgets for the new 2017/2018 financial year. 

CCGs responsible for Walsall, Sefton and St Helens, the Isle of Wight, Scarborough and North Yorkshire will spend less on mental health this year than last year.

 The Freedom of Information requests revealed more positive news for those living elsewhere in England. 

Of the other CCGs who shared their budgets, all will be spending more this year. The FOI data indicates a 4.5 percent increase across the board.