The Board received a report on the progress made in transforming children and young people’s mental health provision and the future actions planned.
It was reported that the Department of Health and NHS England established a Children and Young People’s Mental Health and Wellbeing Taskforce which reported in March 2015 (Future in Mind) and set out the ambitions for improving children’s and young people’s mental health provision by 2020, including making better links between schools and specialist services. It was noted that the key objectives included:
1. Tackling stigma and improving attitudes to mental illness;
2. Introducing more access and waiting time standards for services;
3. Establishing ‘one stop shop’ support services in the community; and
4. Improving access for children and young people who were particularly vulnerable.
It was noted that the Green Paper ‘Transforming children and young people’s mental health provision’ published in December 2017, detailed world leading ambitions through proposals to create a network of support for children and young people and their educational settings. This new approach would be tested and evaluated for future roll-out, as gathering evidence would be a crucial step in delivering on the aims set out in the Green Paper and aligned with the priorities set out for mental health as part of the long-term plan. Members noted there were three core proposals:
1. To incentivise and support all schools and colleges to identify and train a Designated Senior Lead for mental health;
2. To fund new mental health support teams, this would be supervised by NHS children and young people’s mental health staff; and
3. To pilot a four week waiting time for access to specialist NHS children and young people’s mental health services.
It was reported that locally, improving the emotional health and wellbeing outcomes for children and young people was a shared priority for Halton Borough Council and NHS Halton CCG. The One Halton programme was a joint initiative that included all stakeholders working to support adults, children and young people in Halton. The report outlined to the Board the work that had been undertaken already (paragraph 4) and explained the main areas that would be progressed in the coming year.
The following queries were raised by Members:
How is it proposed to ‘incentivise and support all schools and colleges to identify and train a Designated Senior Lead for mental health?’
This was not clear at this point in time as it would be dependent upon the level of funding provided. The designated person could be an existing staff member or a new recruit.
Was the funding for the transformation agenda secure?
CAMHS was funded by the CCG and this would be recurrent until 2020, if the services in place proved to be a success. The new programmes and services being introduced were explained.
Can a progress report be brought to the Board in 12 months’ time?
The transformation was driving up the quality of services to young people and we would be happy to report on progress in 12 months’ time.
RESOLVED: That the Board notes the significant transformation of provision.