CHILDREN AND YOUNG PEOPLE DESERVE BETTER MENTAL HEALTH CARE
A new report from the House of Commons Health Select Committee identifies serious and deeply ingrained problems with the current state of Children’s and Adolescents’ Mental Health Services (CAMHS).
The report highlights many concerns, including a lack of suitable beds in inpatient mental health services and funding cuts for early intervention programmes. All this takes place against the backdrop of rising levels of demand for mental health care.
Disgrace to let children down like this
Dr Peter Carter, Chief Executive & General Secretary of the RCN, said: “Despite current financial challenges, we are still one of the world’s richest countries and it’s a disgrace that vulnerable children and young people are being let down like this.
“The pressure on services and lack of resources is compromising patient safety and it’s unacceptable that some children and young people aren’t able to receive the care they need.”
Perverse commissioning and inadequate funding
Dr Carter continued: “Nursing staff work across all levels of the CAMHS system, from school nurses through to specialist children’s mental health nurse consultants, and every day they can see the consequences of perverse commissioning arrangements and inadequately funded services making it too hard for children and young people with mental health problems to access care.
“Around 50 per cent of life-time mental illness starts before the age of 15. It’s essential to properly fund mental health care for children and young people so that they can receive care before reaching a point of crisis. Earlier intervention and support will be good for patients and also more cost effective for the health service overall.”
Article from Royal College of Nursing