CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services)
What is camhs?
CAMHS stands for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services. CAMHS are the NHS services that assess and treat young people with emotional, behavioural and/or mental health difficulties.
CAMHS support covers depression, problems with food, self-harm, abuse, violence or anger, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and anxiety to name but a few.
There are local NHS CAMHS services around the UK, with teams made up of nurses, therapists, psychologists, support workers and social workers, as well as other professionals.
Aneurin Bevan University Health Board Specialist CAMHS is the specialist mental health service for children and young people under the age of 18 years living in Gwent, covering the five boroughs of Newport, Torfaen, Monmouthshire, Blaenau Gwent and Caerphilly.
How do i get help from CAMHS?
Someone, usually your parents, teacher, GP, or yourself (if old enough), can refer you for an assessment with CAMHS to see what help you can get.
If you're being supported by social care, a youth offending team, or a service at your school, they might also be able to refer you.
It's important to tell the person referring you as much as you can so that you can get the help you need.
Most CAMHS have a website where you can look up how to get access to their service.
DOES CAMHS HELP PARENTS AND CARERS TOO?
Most CAMHS services work with the whole family to support a young person's health.
This might include coming along to assessment and treatment appointments, depending on the child's age and what level of involvement they want.
HOW DO YOUNG PEOPLE MOVE FROM CAMHS TO ADULT SERVICES?
Teenagers will need to move from CAMHS to adult mental health services when they reach a certain age. When it happens depends on where you live, but you should be told at least 6 months in advance.
Transition to adult services is a big change, so it's important to get as much information and support as you can from friend and family. Your CAMHS case worker or care coordinator should create a care plan for you and arrange your transition.
You'll have an assessment with both CAMHS and adult services present to decide what kind of help you can get from the NHS. It's possible that you won't be eligible for the level of care adult services provide, but either way you'll develop a plan for what happens next.
Make sure you also ask about non-NHS support like local youth counselling, charities or school programmes.
Contact Details for your local CAMHS Service: