The government plans to extend the previous government’s talking therapies programme and “link” it to the NHS outcomes framework.

Minister for care services Paul Burstow told a conference on Thursday: “The importance I attach to psychological therapies will be made clear in the NHS operating framework when it’s published in a few weeks’ time.”

Mr Burstow also said there will be a new tariff for talking therapies “linked directly to the outcomes framework”.

Funding for the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies initiative - which provides treatments such as cognitive behavioural therapy - has already risen from £103m in 2009-10 to £173m this year.

But Mr Burstow also said the initiative had to “diversify”: “IAPT must now reach out to a much broader range of people.”