Wolverhampton's health and wellbeing board has become a signatory to the Prevention Concordat for Better Mental Health, showcasing a shared commitment from partners to work together to prevent mental health problems and promote good mental health and wellbeing in the city.

To become a signatory, Health and Wellbeing Together developed a comprehensive action plan showing how partners are working together to better understand mental health and wellbeing issues in the city.

It highlighted existing work to promote ‘protective factors’ for mental health such as early years support, good education, and good quality work, as well as the work that is taking place to reduce ‘risk factors’ such as unemployment, poverty, loneliness, violence, and discrimination. 

The action plan outlined existing commitments to tackle the social and economic disadvantages that lead to mental health inequalities, and steps to address mental health stigma, discrimination, and exclusion.

Wolverhampton Health and Wellbeing Together's application received praise from an assessment panel at the Government's Office for Health Improvement and Disparities, who were 'impressed by the breadth of needs assessment', the 'in depth understanding of mental health needs' in the city and the 'significant level of buy in' to the process among local organisations. 

Overall, it was 'recognised as a very strong submission and the panel unanimously agreed its approval to become a concordat signatory'.

Councillor Jasbir Jaspal, Chair of Wolverhampton Health and Wellbeing Together and the council's Cabinet Member for Adults and Wellbeing, said: "The mental health and wellbeing of our residents is as important as their physical health, and both are a key priority for the council. 

"Mental health problems are unevenly distributed across society and can affect every aspect of people's lives. Half of all mental health problems have been established by the age of 14, rising to 3 quarters by the time people turn 24. 

"Creating the conditions for every resident in the city to have the best mental health and wellbeing that they can at every stage of their life underpins our Joint Local Health and Wellbeing Strategy 2023 to 2028, and we are already working well in partnership in Wolverhampton to strengthen the protective factors and reduce the risk factors which can affect people's mental health and wellbeing. 

"Signing the concordat brings this all together under a single lens so that we can understand our strengths, what is working well, and agree the areas we will focus on together in the future."

The Prevention Concordat for Better Mental Health is underpinned by an understanding that taking a prevention focused approach to improving the public’s mental health makes a valuable contribution to achieving a fairer and more equitable society.

The Government says that signing the consensus statement and committing to a plan to address the prevention and promotion of better mental health is a cost effective, evidence based approach to reducing health inequalities and preventing future harm.