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(UK) 1/3 of kids referred for mental health services "turned away"; 3 yr wait for ASD diagnosis

July 24, 2021, Mirror: Third of children referred to mental health services last year were turned away

More than a third of kids referred to mental health services were turned away last year, the Labour Party has revealed. Around 73,000 out of 195,000 cases were closed before treatment started in the year 2020/21. But Labour fears the true number could be far higher than that as just 22 of 45 mental health trusts responded to its Freedom of Information request. Parents claim they cannot get help from the NHS Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) for conditions such as anxiety, depression and eating disorders…. GP Dr Keith Grimes, from Eastbourne, East Sussex, said: “I have not been able to get a referral through CAMHS in my 20-year career.” And another, Dr Shan Hussain in Nottingham, hasn’t had a referral accepted for seven years. The Mental Health of Children and Young People in England 2020 report said one in 16 are “likely to have a mental disorder”. Dr Carrie Grant, who runs a support group for the families of young girls, said: “We know of one family whose 15-year-old tried to drown themselves and was hospitalised 18 months ago, yet they still wait for a CAMH appointment. Things will get worse post-Covid and more join the waiting list. “Many families find themselves going around in circles. Their school or GP refers them to CAHMS, then they say it’s an educational issue, then the school says it’s a health issue.”… More than 6,000 young people referred to the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust also went untreated – a shocking 81%. In 2019/2020, more than 535,000 kids were referred to CAMHS for help – up 35% on the previous year and almost 60% on the year before that. Elijah Tomlinson has been on the NHS waiting list for two years, and now faces another 12-month delay for help. The nine-year-old, who struggles socially and may be on the autistic spectrum, was referred by his school in 2019. But six weeks ago, Elijah’s parents, Jess and Dale, received a letter from North Warwickshire NHS Trust saying he would not be assessed for another year. Elijah’s brother Zion, seven, also has meltdowns and social issues and has been waiting for 18 months. Mum Jess, 32, from Coventry, said: “The waiting lists are absolutely terrible….


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