New Horizons, launched on Monday, got a pleasing amount of coverage for a mental health story.
Most of the reporting emphasised the economic and health benefits of plans to do more to help people with mental illness find work. The Times reported that “mental health ‘coordinators’ are to be based in Jobcentres to help people with conditions such as depression find and stay in work”, while The Observer focused on the Department of Health’s plans to more than triple funding for research into mental health.
Sub-editors at the Daily Mirror fell far short of guidelines on the reporting of stories about mental health
Sub-editors at the Daily Mirror, however, fell far short of guidelines on the reporting of stories about mental health, running their story on the Jobcentre coordinators under the headline “You don’t have to be…” evoking that very un-PC poster that used to be seen in offices up and down the country. Another version of the story, presumably in a later edition after someone had expressed dismay at the original, had a far straighter headline. Perhaps the Mirror offices are decorated with a poster that says: “You don’t have to be insensitive to work here, but it helps.”
And as HSJ’s scoop about Baroness Young’s departure from the Care Quality Commission, published on our website on Friday evening, was followed up by most of the weekend papers, the chancellor was “mis-speaking” live on television. As the Financial Times described it: “The world’s biggest civilian IT project was thrown into turmoil after Alistair Darling implied it was going to be scrapped.” It turns out that when Mr Darling said the £12.7bn NHS IT programme was “something that we don’t need to go ahead with just now” he really only meant finding £600m of savings by cutting back on features that are less important to patients.
Let’s hope he got his speaking straight in time for yesterday’s pre-Budget report.