People with severe mental illness (SMI) are at significantly higher risk of developing preventable conditions including diabetes, respiratory illness and cardiovascular disease. Estimates of potential life years lost due to physical illness range from 15 to 20 years. 40,000 deaths could be prevented annually if SMI patients received the same physical healthcare interventions as the general population.
Untreated physical illness in people with SMI leads to higher use of unplanned and urgent care. Quality Watch showed that people with mental health problems are three times more likely to attend A&E than the general population.
People with long term physical conditions often suffer from untreated anxiety and depression, leading to a 50-100% increase in healthcare costs Long Term Conditions and Mental Health.