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Scottish Government pledge £4m to recruit 80 mental health professionals to work with children

NECN Contributor1 19th December 2018 Local News Comments Off on Scottish Government pledge £4m to recruit 80 mental health professionals to work with children

Scotland will recruit an extra 80 mental health professionals to work with children and young people with a £4 million investment.

Psychologists, nurses, allied health professionals and administration workers are being hired to try and reduce the pressure on Scottish mental health services.

The funding announcement coincides with the publication of a review into how to improve Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) that recommends cutting the target waiting time for specialist treatment by a third, to 12 weeks.

Mental Health Minister Clare Haughey announced the £4 million funding during a visit with taskforce chair Dr Dame Denise Coia to The Junction in north Edinburgh.

Ms Haughey said: “Across Scotland, talented and dedicated mental health staff provide high-quality care to young people and are seeing more people than ever.

Mental Health Minister, Clare Haughey.

“However our services face a number of challenges, and in particular waiting times for specialist care are unacceptable.

“That is why we are investing an additional £4 million in CAMHS staff, who will be instrumental in supporting new services and reducing pressure on the system.

“We have not shied away from honestly discussing the issues, and appointed a taskforce to consider how to reform services.

“Their delivery plan is an ambitious programme of work that will inform the whole public sector about how we can ensure young people get the right care at the right time in the right place.”

The taskforce also suggests stopping young people being referred to specialist care by default, instead treating more in community-based care while giving young people and families more information on mental health services and how the system works.

NHS figures released earlier this month revealed 221 young Scots have been waiting more than a year for specialist help with mental health problems, while there were 197 cases where children with such conditions were treated on adult wards in 2017-18.

Four out of 14 health boards in Scotland met their target of having 90% of youngsters accepted by CAMHS to begin treatment in 18 weeks.

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