Accessibility Misc.

Children’s Commissioner Lightning Review

A lightning report from the Children’s Commissioner about access to CAMHS has highlighted some concerning issues.

These include:

  • Long waiting times
  • Large numbers(28%) of children and young people referred to CAMHS being turned away without being receiving any services due to restricted thresholds (reasons include: age, specific conditions or severity level)
  • Children and young people falling out of the system due to DNA policies
  • Variations in practice across the country
    • Anywhere from 4 – 200 days of waiting time
    • 18-80% variation in likelihood of receiving treatment


There are no recommendations from the report, but young people involved in the report asked for the following (p.23):

  • Shorter waiting times.
  • For someone to be available to talk to between the referral to CAMHS and the first appointment, ‘they could be like a bridge and help you at the first CAMHS meeting’.
  • Not relying on letters to get you to the first appointment, especially when your family is not reliable. Contacts and reminders should be sent by phone and text.
  • Reducing the stigma around being in care or having a mental health need.
  • Providing a drop-in service for young people where they could chat about things that worried them and get to know the people running the service.

You can read the full report by clicking here

By natashabyrne

Project Manager for the Childrens Wellbeing Practitioner Programme

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