Skip to content

Agenda item

Children and Young People's Mental Health Transformation Programme - Update

Report of the Commissioning Manager, Sheffield Clinical Commissioning Group



The Committee received a joint report of the Director of Commissioning, Inclusion and Learning, Sheffield City Council and the Director of Commissioning and Performance (Sheffield Clinical Commissioning Group) containing an update on the Children and Young People’s Mental Health Transformation Programme.




In attendance for this item were Councillor Jackie Drayton (Cabinet Member for Children and Families), Dawn Walton (Director of Commissioning, Inclusion and Learning), Bethan Plant (Health Improvement Principal), Laurence Green (Deputy Associate Director, Sheffield Children’s Hospital), Matthew Peers (Commissioning and Performance Manager, Sheffield Clinical Commissioning Group) and Nicola Ennis (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) Service Manager, Sheffield Children’s Hospital).




As an introduction, Councillor Jackie Drayton stated that she wished to place on record her thanks and appreciation to Councillors Mick Rooney and Sue Alston (former Chair and Deputy Chair of the Healthier Communities and Adult Social Care Scrutiny and Policy Development Committee) and to the members of the Health and Wellbeing Board, for their work in conjunction with the Scrutiny review of the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS), which resulted in key changes, including the funding of a gap in services for 16 to 18 year olds.




The report contained an update on the Transformation Programme, including details of the work undertaken in relation to the transition between Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) and Adult Mental Health Services (AMHS), progress in terms of internal waits within CAMHS, details of wider areas of progress, including an all-age approach to mental health services, Door 43 and eating disorders, and details of priority areas for the next 12 months.  The report was supported by a presentation by Matthew Peers.




Members of the Committee raised questions, and the following responses were provided:-




·                 Door 43 comprised an emotional, wellbeing and mental health counselling service for 13 to 25 year olds.  The service, provided through Star House, comprised a “drop-in” facility, whereby children and young people with low-level mental health problems could attend and receive counselling from a range of professionals, including youth and primary mental health workers.  The children and young people could also be referred on, when deemed appropriate, to Multi-Agency Support Teams (MAST) or CAMHS.  As a result of its popularity, and to ensure its sustainability, funding for the service has been increased by 45%, with effect from April, 2019.




·                 The six-session appointment model, which had only recently been introduced, provided an opportunity for CAMHS to offer a quick follow-up session, if required, without children and young people having to wait long periods for another appointment.  It had been identified that some children and young people required a change in their pathway offer, following their initial assessment, and this model provided the opportunity to enable CAMHS to determine what specialist treatment they required.




·                 Kooth have been commissioned to provide an on-line counselling service for 11 to 18 year olds and care leavers. The on-line service would go live with effect from April, 2019, and would initially run for one year.  Anyone wishing to use the service simply logged on to a chatroom, and was able to “speak” to a qualified counsellor.  Kooth would also refer any cases onto other services, if determined necessary, such as CAMHS.




·                 Work was ongoing in terms of looking at how the eating disorder pathway could be improved.




·                 In terms of the transition from child to adult services, it was accepted that the thresholds regarding the two services were different, and work was ongoing to try and address this issue, which would hopefully result in the transitions to the different age groups being made without any major problems.




·       A number of changes had been made to the CAMHS’ referral system, one being the recruitment of a number of clinicians, to whom referrals with regard to low-level mental health issues, could be made.  In addition, the Service had worked closely with the Healthy Minds Schools, in connection with nominating a staff member responsible for making direct referrals to the Service, with this initiative being rolled out to all schools in the City over time.




·                 Work continued in terms of breaking down the stigma of mental health, which had included working on an awareness-raising campaign with the Children and Young People’s Empowerment Project (Chilypep).




·                 Whilst there were no statistics available at the meeting regarding the gender breakdown in terms of referrals to CAHMS, this information could be provided to Members of the Committee.




·                 Whether referrals were expedited depended on what information had been provided to CAHMS, as part of the referral.  Any additional information regarding the child or young person would be taken into consideration, and the speed, and where the referral would be made, would then be determined based on this information.  A number of referrals are made to the Forensic CAMHS.  In addition, the Council and its partners would undertake multi-systemic therapy work, where issues regarding the wider family would be considered and taken into consideration.  CAMHS also worked closely with schools’ inclusion services in connection with Pupil Referral Units.




·                 CAMHS was well aware of the dangers of psychosis, as a symptom of serious mental disorders, as well as its links with excessive cannabis use.  The service worked very closely with the AMHS in connection with identifying such symptoms in children and young people as early as possible.  The Service also had strong links with a number of third sector organisations which worked with children and young people with regard to drug and alcohol misuse.  Educational sessions warning of the dangers of drug use were held in schools, and the Council was currently looking at establishing an all-age drug and alcohol misuse strategy.




RESOLVED: That the Committee:-




(a)      notes the information contained in the report now submitted, together with the information reported as part of the presentation now made, and the responses to the questions raised;




(b)      thanks the representatives of the partner agencies for attending the meeting, and responding to the questions raised;




(c)  welcomes the progress made in connection with the Transformation Programme over the last 12 months; and




(d)      requests that representatives of the partner agencies be invited to attend a meeting of the Committee in 12 months to provide a further update on the Programme, to include more detailed information on the issues raised at this meeting,  and to be circulated well in advance of the meeting at which it is to be discussed to allow Members to prepare for the discussion, and to include:-




(i)       combatting the stigma of mental health;


(ii)      analysing complaints and compliments;


(iii)      University of Sheffield report;


(iv)     re-entry statistics and analysis;


(v)      gender breakdown; and


(vi)     waiting  times.


Supporting documents: