What we do

Promoting excellence in mental health services and the importance of good mental health.

We represent

We ensure members’ voices are at the heart of national decision-making, meeting with politicians, policymakers and opinion-formers to influence change. We:

  • influence policy and legislation on mental health
  • interpret the broader political and policy environment
  • championing good practice and innovation in the mental health sector.

Our ongoing work includes:

  • We co-founded the Mental Health Policy Group, a coalition consisting of the MHN, Rethink Mental Illness, Centre for Mental Health, Mental Health Foundation, Mind and the Royal College of Psychiatrists. .

  • We are undertaking a joint project with Centre for Mental Health and The London School of Economics to deliver in-depth economic evaluations of specific mental health interventions. The Mental Health Economics Collaborative (MHEC) will be a commissioning vehicle for evaluations of innovative practice in mental health. It will also provide a forum for providers to amplify the profile and publicity associated with their services. MHN members will be invited to approach the MHEC for part funding of robust evaluations of their services or, where evaluations have already taken place, to offer the findings of these as case studies for the overarching MHEC programme. They will see micro-economic evaluations of their services combine to create strong, evidence-based, macro-economic policy recommendations.

  • In consultation with members, we supplied evidence to the Mental Health Act Review, helping to shape its recommendations.

    Our chief executive Sean Duggan sits on the expert advisory group for the review and holds quarterly meetings with Simon Wessely as part of the MHPG. 

  • We work as part of the Cavendish Coalition, with 36 other health and social care organisations, to monitor the implications of Brexit on health and care. The network is also a member of the Brexit Health Alliance which brings together NHS, medical research, industry, patients and public health organisations to safeguard the interests of patients and the healthcare and research they rely on during the Brexit negotiations.

  • We are undertaking work on how digital technology can support the design and development of mental health services by exploring models of good practice around the UK, the USA and Australia. Our events programme, including our  annual conference and exhibition, regularly showcases innovative practice and approaches. 

  • We will continue to work on the what the future of the mental health workforce should look like, following on from the publication of our report, The future of the mental health workforce with the Centre for Mental Health, supported by Health Education England and NHS Employers. We will continue to work with partners, including Health Education England, on projects relating to the key recommendations made in the report.

We connect

Our events provide opportunities for our members to hear from key influencers and network with peers. They unite mental health service providers, national bodies, political parties and cutting-edge researchers.

Our events programme includes:

  • Annual conference and exhibition
  • Regular, bespoke member meetings and events
  • Sessions at the NHS Confederation annual conference

We support

We dissect the big issues and keep our members up to date with the latest knowledge and thinking affecting the sector.

Our members benefit from:

  • the latest policy briefings
  • cutting-edge reports on key areas of the complex policy agenda
  • fortnightly updates from MHN chief executive 
  • e-newsletters with the latest announcements, hot topics and opportunities to get involved.

Plus our Aspiring Nursing Directors Programme, run in partnership with the National Mental Health and Learning Disability Nurse Directors Forum, provides a vital platform for those looking to step up into this role. The programme brings participants together to hear from high-profile, influential speakers and supports them right up to interview stage.

Interested in membership?

Join us Arrow pointing right