'I must travel from Wales to London for anorexia treatment'
Mental health provision could be a postcode lottery in Wales, from the more populated areas especially.
One patient with personal connection with that is 21-year-old Mair Elliott.
She includes a past history of mental illness, including anxiety and depression, dating to her childhood and was identified as having anorexia at 17 back.
But when she needed medical therapy, Mair had to go to London to obtain it.
She told ITV News: “I needed specialist treatments and that came by means of having to get into hospital.
“However, there weren’t any beds in Wales and weren&rsquo there;t any beds any nearer to me than in London, therefore i spent three . 5 months within an in-patient bed in London.”
Mair’s recovery is a complex process and she still requires medical therapy. Now even, years on from her initial diagnosis, the ongoing services obtainable in Wales haven’t improved on her behalf or other people needing similar treatment. For Mair, this implies an extended journey from Tenby in west Wales.
“You can find no specialist in-patient beds for eating disorders in Wales therefore if someone was to require eating disorder treatment they’d need to head to England outside,” she said.
Mair says that needing to travel such as this when in the grip of a mental illness could be detrimental to the healing process.
Most mental health patients in Wales don’t have to leave the national country to obtain treatment, but even those facilities that exist aren’t being used with their full potential always.
The Gellinudd Recovery Centre can be an in-patient service in Pontardawe run by Welsh charity Hafal. The secure unit feels similar to a hotel when compared to a hospital – patients are known as “guests” – but with the referral process to the centre drawn-out often, a lot of the beds are left empty.
When ITV News visited, only five of the 16 beds were used.
Senior consultant Helen Bennett believes they might achieve a lot more if the spaces were filled.
“We’quite unique re, I don’t think there’s such as this in the united kingdom anywhere,” she said.
“We’ve had the right outcomes up to now for folks really, folks are progressing well in a significant short time of time really.”
According to Welsh Government figures, the real amount of NHS beds designed for mental illness has decreased from the average 2, each day in 2009/10 to at least one 1 061,552 in 2016/17. It says this partly because of more care being delivered near home, than in acute settings rather.
The Welsh Government is attempting to reduce the amount of patients being treated beyond your country and make sure that existing facilities are employed properly.
Health minister Vaughan Gething said progress has been made but there’s still work to be achieved.
“What we now have is really a base to provide further improvement on and that improvement is completely required,” he told ITV News.