LESS than ten per cent of a government grant towards South Warwickshire children’s mental health services was spent on what it was intended for.
South Warwickshire Clinical Commissioning Group (SWCCG) was allocated £484,000 to develop schemes for young patients with mental health conditions such as autism and eating disorders.
But just £44,000 was spent on the service.
The CCG says most of the remainder of the money went on other schemes helping people with mental health issues.
The figures were uncovered by Stratford Liberal Democrats who put in a Freedom of Information (FOI) request to the group.
Lib Dem county councillor Kate Rolfe said: “ Surely the mental health of our children is of the highest priority. Not only do the children suffer but often parents are at their wits end trying to cope.
“There are constant reports of long delays in providing treatment. We want the overview and scrutiny committee to talk to the CCG about what the rest of the money was spent on, or whether it is still available to spend this year.
“The CCG is assuring us that this year the whole of the allocation it is getting will be spent on children’s mental health. We’re a quarter of the way through the year and I would like some reassurance that they’re on track to meet this promise.”
And the CCG – which has a budget of £49million to spend on the mental health service – say the issue arose due to its schemes for young people not being completed on time.
A spokesman said: “The CCG spent a significant proportion of its budget on mental health services which fall under different spending categories.
“We received an allocation of £484,000 to develop schemes for young patients with a range of mental health conditions.
“The total was not specifically spent on these areas due to the schemes not being in place by the end of the financial year. However, the surplus was largely spent on people with mental health conditions via our healthcare schemes.
“This is an area which has seen over £3million spent above the CCG’s budget allocation over the last year.”