French health service to pay for psychotherapy, Macron says

·1 min read
French President Macron delivers a speech at the national convention on mental health and psychiatry in Paris

PARIS (Reuters) - The French state health service is to start paying some of the costs of prescribed psychotherapy, and will create 800 new jobs in mental health centres from 2022, President Emmanuel Macron said on Tuesday.

Citizens will receive 40 euros for the first session and 30 euros for follow-up sessions, somewhat less than the average price, which generally ranges between 50 and 70 euros, and provided that the sessions are prescribed by a doctor.

The isolation brought about by three COVID-19 lockdowns and social distancing measures has caused a surge in people complaining of stress and loneliness, in France as elsewhere.

"The pandemic has revealed the importance of mental health ... this is a commitment for the entire nation," Macron told a news conference.

Currently, only some private health insurers reimburse patients for psychotherapy sessions.

(Reporting by Benoit van Overstraeten; Writing by GV De Clercq; Editing by Kevin Liffey)

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