Adults with mental health difficulties

Adults with mental health difficulties


  • At least one in four people will experience a mental health problem at some point in their life and one in six adults has a mental health problem at any one time.
  • Almost half of all adults will experience at least one episode of depression during their lifetime.
  • One in ten new mothers experience post-natal depression.
  • About one in 100 people has a severe mental health problem.


  • The number of working age adults in Northumberland with a diagnosable mental illness may be approaching 20,000 – though commonly less than one in four require treatment from specialist mental health services, and less than one in four of these have a psychotic illness.
  • 644 working age adults in Northumberland were on the caseloads of community mental health teams at the end of March 2017.
  • Community mental health teams report that 8-15% of the people they work with have alcohol, drug or other substance misuse problems in addition to their mental illness.
  • Community mental health services in Northumberland generally find that rather under 1% of their caseloads are from non-white ethnic groups – broadly in line with the overall population. There is a little evidence that these groups may be over-represented among those admitted for in-patient care or compulsorily detained in hospital, though the numbers are very small. There is national evidence that black and minority ethnic groups have varying rates of psychosis and can be treated differently from the white population by mental health services.
At the end of March 2017, 362 people with mental health problems were receiving services commissioned from the social care budget. Of these people:
  • 70 people were attending day care and outreach services providing a range of statutory and non-statutory opportunities in different areas of the county with a focus on vocational skills or employment opportunities
  • 53 were arranging some or all of their support themselves using a direct payment
  • 215 were supported by home carers, for an average of 10 hours per week
  • housing-related support was being provided to 60 people
  • 74 were living in care homes, of whom 16 were in care homes providing nursing care. 26 of the 74 people were living in care homes outside Northumberland.
  • 6 people had short breaks in care homes arranged by the adult care directorate

Statistical information: