What is a Minister of Mental Health?

Introduction

Ministers of Mental Health are specific Government Ministers with a responsibility over mental health.

Brief History

Not many countries have dedicated ministers for mental health, however a minister with another name may be responsible for it.

By Country

  • Australia;
    • Minister for Families and Social Services, whose responsibilities include mental health (Federal Government).
    • Minister for Mental Health (Australian Capital Territory).
    • Minister for Mental Health, Regional Youth and Women (New South Wales).
    • Minister for Health (Northern Territory), whose responsibilities include mental health.
    • Minister for Health and Ambulance Services (Queensland), whose responsibilities include mental health.
    • Minister for Health and Wellbeing (South Australia), whose responsibilities include mental health.
    • Minister for Mental Health and Wellbeing (Tasmania).
    • Minister for Mental Health (Victoria).
    • Minister for Mental Health (Western Australia).
  • Canada:
    • Minister of Mental Health and Addictions.
  • Ireland:
    • Minister of State for Mental Health and Older People.

This page is based on the copyrighted Wikipedia article <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minister_of_Mental_Health >; it is used under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License (CC-BY-SA). You may redistribute it, verbatim or modified, providing that you comply with the terms of the CC-BY-SA.

What is the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care (Scotland)?

Introduction

The Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care, commonly referred to as the Health Secretary, is a cabinet position in the Scottish Government. The Cabinet Secretary is responsible for the Health and Social Care Directorates and NHS Scotland.

The Cabinet Secretary is assisted by the Minister for Public Health, Women’s Health and Sport and Minister for Mental Wellbeing and Social Care.

The current Cabinet Secretary is Humza Yousaf, who was appointed in May 2021 (as at May 2022).

Brief History

The position was created in 1999 as the Minister for Health and Community Care, with the advent of devolution and the institution of the Scottish Parliament, taking over some of the roles and functions of the former Scottish Office that existed prior to 1999. After the 2007 election the Ministerial position was renamed to the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing.

After the 2011 election the full Ministerial title was Cabinet Secretary for Health, Wellbeing and Cities Strategy with the portfolio being expanded to include Cities Strategy which was part of the SNP manifesto to have a dedicated “Minister for Cities”; at the same time the responsibility for housing was removed and transferred to the new Cabinet Secretary for Infrastructure and Capital Investment. Responsibilities for the cities strategy and the delivery of the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow were later transferred to other members of the cabinet.

After the 2016 election, the name of the post was changed to simply Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport. In the 2021 cabinet reshuffle, the post was retitled to Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care.

Overview

Responsibilities

The responsibilities of the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care include:

  • NHS Scotland and its performance, staff and pay.
  • Health care and social integration.
  • Patient services and patient safety.
  • Primary care.
  • Allied Healthcare services.
  • Carers, adult care and support.
  • Child and maternal health.
  • Medical records, health improvement and protection.

Public Bodies

The following public bodies report to the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care:

  • NHS Scotland.
  • Care Inspectorate.
  • Mental Welfare Commission for Scotland.
  • Scottish Social Services Council.
  • Sportscotland.

This page is based on the copyrighted Wikipedia article <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cabinet_Secretary_for_Health_and_Social_Care >; it is used under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License (CC-BY-SA). You may redistribute it, verbatim or modified, providing that you comply with the terms of the CC-BY-SA.

What is the Minister for Mental Wellbeing and Social Care (Scotland)?

Introduction

The Minister for Mental Wellbeing and Social Care is a member of the Scottish Government.

The Minister reports to the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care, who has overall responsibility for the portfolio, and is a member of cabinet. As a Junior Minister the post holder is not a member of the Scottish Government Cabinet. The current Minister for Mental Wellbeing and Social Care is Kevin Stewart (as at May 2022).

Overview

Responsibilities include:

  • Mental health.
  • Child and Adolescent Mental Health.
  • Adult support and protection.
  • Autism, sensory impairment and learning difficulties.
  • Dementia.
  • Mental Welfare Commission for Scotland (safeguards the rights of people with mental health problems, learning disabilities, dementia and related conditions).
  • Survivors of childhood abuse.
  • The State Hospital at Carstairs.

Brief History

The Minister for Mental Health is the second Scottish Government ministerial post to include mental health in the title. The post had been announced on 21 November 2014 as the Minister for Sport and Health Improvement and similar ministerial posts had also existed in the very recent past under different titles. Mental health was added to the title so that the post became Minister for Sport, Health Improvement and Mental Health.

The Sport portfolio was the responsibility of Deputy Minister for Communities and Sport from 2000 to 2001 in the Dewar Government (which was not a cabinet position). From 2000 to 2001 the Minister for the Environment, Sport and Culture was the Cabinet Minister with whose responsibilities included sport. From 2001 to 2003 these roles were combined in the Minister for Communities and Sport, which was renamed the Minister for Tourism, Culture and Sport after the addition of the tourism portfolio, following the 2003 election.

The Salmond Government, elected following the Scottish Parliament election in 2007, created the junior post of Minister for Communities and Sport held by Stewart Maxwell MSP, combining the Sport and Communities portfolios. The Minister assisted the new Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing. In 2009, the Sport portfolio was given to the Minister for Public Health under the new title Minister for Public Health and Sport. This post was held by Shona Robison. After the 2011 Scottish election, sport was separated from the portfolio and given to a new Ministerial creation, the Minister for Commonwealth Games and Sport (this remained Shona Robison).

Finally, this was promoted to a Cabinet Secretary position from 22 April to 21 November 2014 under the title of Cabinet Secretary for Commonwealth Games, Sport, Equalities and Pensioners’ Rights (still Shona Robison), until the reshuffle of 21 November 2014 when Nicola Sturgeon announced her first Cabinet. Sport returned to its original position as a junior Ministerial post.

The current Minister for Mental Health post was created in the Second Sturgeon government in the reshuffle that followed the 2016 Scottish Parliament election.

This page is based on the copyrighted Wikipedia article <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minister_for_Mental_Wellbeing_and_Social_Care >; it is used under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License (CC-BY-SA). You may redistribute it, verbatim or modified, providing that you comply with the terms of the CC-BY-SA.

What is a Non-Departmental Public Body (UK)?

Introduction

In the United Kingdom, non-departmental public body (NDPB) is a classification applied by the Cabinet Office, Treasury, the Scottish Government and the Northern Ireland Executive to public sector organisations that have a role in the process of national government but are not part of a government department.

NDPBs carry out their work largely independently from ministers and are accountable to the public through the Parliament; however, ministers are responsible for the independence, effectiveness and efficiency of non-departmental public bodies in their portfolio.

The term includes the four types of NDPB (executive, advisory, tribunal and independent monitoring boards) but excludes public corporations and public broadcasters (BBC, Channel 4 and S4C).

Types of Body

The UK Government classifies bodies into four main types, whilst the Scottish Government has five:

  • Advisory NDPBs:
    • These bodies consist of boards which advise ministers on particular policy areas.
    • They are often supported by a small secretariat from the parent department and any expenditure is paid for by that department.
  • Executive NDPBs:
    • These bodies usually deliver a particular public service and are overseen by a board rather than ministers.
    • Appointments are made by ministers following the Code of Practice of the Commissioner for Public Appointments.
    • They employ their own staff and are allocated their own budgets.
  • Tribunal NDPBs:
    • These bodies have jurisdiction in an area of the law.
    • They are co-ordinated by Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service, an executive agency of the Ministry of Justice, and supervised by the Administrative Justice and Tribunals Council, itself a NDPB sponsored by the Ministry of Justice.
  • Independent Monitoring Boards:
    • These bodies were formerly known as “boards of visitors” and are responsible for the state of prisons, their administration and the treatment of prisoners.
    • The Home Office is responsible for their costs, and has to note all expenses.
  • NHS Bodies:
    • Scotland only.

Examples include the Mental Welfare Commission for Scotland and Mental Health Tribunals.

Contrast with Executive Agencies, Non-Ministerial Departments and Quangos

NDPB differ from executive agencies as they are not created to carry out ministerial orders or policy, instead they are more or less self-determining and enjoy greater independence. They are also not directly part of government like a non-ministerial government department being at a remove from both ministers and any elected assembly or parliament. Typically an NDPB would be established under statute and be accountable to Parliament rather than to Her Majesty’s Government. This arrangement allows more financial independence since the government is obliged to provide funding to meet statutory obligations.

NDPBs are sometimes referred to as quangos. However, this term originally referred to quasi-NGOs bodies that are, at least ostensibly, non-government organisations, but nonetheless perform governmental functions. The backronym “quasi-autonomous national government organisation” is used in this usage which is normally pejorative.

Brief History

In March 2009 there were nearly 800 public bodies that were sponsored by the UK Government including:

  • 198 executive NDPBs;
  • 410 advisory bodies;
  • 33 tribunals;
  • 21 public corporations;
  • The Bank of England;
  • 2 public broadcasting authorities; and
  • 23 NHS bodies.

However, the classification is conservative and does not include bodies that are the responsibility of devolved government, various lower tier boards (including a considerable number within the NHS), and also other boards operating in the public sector (e.g. school governors and police authorities).

These appointed bodies performed a large variety of tasks, for example health trusts, or the Welsh Development Agency, and by 1992 were responsible for some 25% of all government expenditure in the UK. According to the Cabinet Office their total expenditure for the financial year 2005-2006 was £167 billion.

Criticism

Critics argued that the system was open to abuse as most NDPBs had their members directly appointed by government ministers without an election or consultation with the people. The press, critical of what was perceived as the Conservatives’ complacency in power in the 1990s, presented much material interpreted as evidence of questionable government practices.

This concern led to the formation of a Committee on Standards in Public Life (the Nolan Committee) which first reported in 1995 and recommended the creation of a “public appointments commissioner” to make sure that appropriate standards were met in the appointment of members of NDPBs. The Government accepted the recommendation, and the Office of the Commissioner for Public Appointments was established in November 1995.

While in opposition, the Labour Party promised to reduce the number and power of NDPBs. The use of NDPBs continued under the Labour government in office from 1997 to 2010, though the political controversy associated with NDPBs in the mid-1990s for the most part died away.

In 2010 the UK’s Conservative-Liberal coalition published a review of NDPBs recommending closure or merger of nearly two hundred bodies, and the transfer of others to the private sector. This process was colloquially termed the “bonfire of the quangos”.

Classification in National Accounts

NDPBs are classified under code S.13112 of the European System of Accounts (ESA.95). However, Statistics UK does not break out the detail for these bodies and they are consolidated into General Government (S.1311).