Cash for CAMHS

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AS A coalition whose members deliver specialist care and education services for children and young people with complex needs, we have launched a ­petition calling on the Scottish Government to use the circa £25 million of annual additional health spending arising from the UK government’s Budget to improve mental health services for vulnerable children and young people in Scotland.

At the moment mental health services in Scotland are at breaking point, with the number of referrals for specialist child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS) increasing by 60 per cent over the past two years. This is putting medical professionals under incredible pressure.

Due to a lack of adequate ­provision hundreds of vulnerable children and young people are being treated in unsuitable adult or paediatric wards, or being sent miles away from their families. And half of Scotland’s health boards are failing to meet waiting time targets to access CAMHS that came into force at the end of last year.

We would urge people to get behind the campaign and sign the petition, encouraging the Scottish Government to go that extra mile and ensure the mental health services many young people in Scotland so desperately need are being provided.

Scottish Children’s Services Coalition:

Sophie Pilgrim, director, Kindred Scotland

Tom McGhee, managing director, Spark of Genius

Duncan Dunlop, chief executive, Who Cares?

Stuart Jacob, director, Falkland House School

Niall Kelly, managing director, Young Foundations

Walker Street