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Greater Manchester receives 10% less funding on mental health services than the national average, and infrastructure is struggling under demand, AI-powered mental health software business, Limbic, has warned.

Fresh insight and analysis into the growing demand for mental health therapies in the Greater Manchester area has revealed that infrastructure is struggling to keep up with growing demand, and better use of technology holds the answer to more effective care in the region.

Within the Greater Manchester Boroughs of Bolton, Manchester, Salford, Trafford, and Wigan – a record 24,915 people completed a full course of talking therapy over 2020/1, the highest figures seen yet by Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust (GMMH). 

Spending on mental health services per person is 9.7% lower in Greater Manchester (£188.50) compared to the national average (£208.69). This disparity in funding is compounded by the often lengthy triage process in the region, which sees potential patients drop out and practitioners spending more time than ever triaging potential patients.

The insights come after Salford native and New Order frontman, Bernard Sumner, spoke in parliament about lengthy NHS waiting lists for mental health support, and his own difficulties in being able to access help for former bandmate Ian Curtis before he took his own life in 1980.

Limbic offers a potential solution through a carefully crafted AI platform designed to manage the triage of patients, unlocking up service providers’ time to focus on delivering the actual therapy. It takes the form of a web-based chatbot to handle on-boarding, Limbic Access, and a virtual therapist whilst someone is on the waiting list, Limbic Care. 

Between October – December in 2021 alone, Limbic allowed over 30,000 patients to access care whilst freeing up more than 9,000 clinical hours, across healthcare providers in the UK.

Ross Harper, Limbic, commented:

“Whilst Greater Manchester has been recognised as Good by the Care Quality Commission, it’s clear that more could be done to improve access to psychological care in the region. 

“As we’ve seen, demand is higher than ever, with more people completing a full course of therapy in the region last year than ever before. But its important supply – or at least access to the supply – is keeping pace with this demand.

“We regularly speak with clinicians and trusts, and it’s clear that the self referral process could be improved for the benefit of potential patients and practitioners alike.

“Use of AI technology, such as Limbic, can drastically improve the completion rates of self referrals, and also make therapy sessions yet more tailored and effective.”

For more information about Limbic visit www.limbic.ai