NOTE: By submitting this form and registering with us, you are providing us with permission to store your personal data and the record of your registration. In addition, registration with the Medical Independent includes granting consent for the delivery of that additional professional content and targeted ads, and the cookies required to deliver same. View our Privacy Policy and Cookie Notice for further details.

You can opt out at anytime by visiting our cookie policy page. In line with the provisions of the GDPR, the provision of your personal data is a requirement necessary to enter into a contract. We must advise you at the point of collecting your personal data that it is a required field, and the consequences of not providing the personal data is that we cannot provide this service to you.

Don't have an account? Subscribe

CAMHS in crisis over waiting times and staffing

By Mindo - 01st Mar 2018

<p class=”p1″>Almost 19,000 referrals to <span class=”s1″>CAMHS were received in 2017 and </span>the HSE expects around 18,830 <span class=”s1″>referrals to be made in 2018.</span>

<p class=”p1″>However, of the approximately 19,000 referrals last year, just 11,286 cases were seen by mental health services. The HSE had anticipated that 14,365 referrals <span class=”s1″>would be seen in 2017.</span>

<p class=”p1″>In May 2017, the <em>Sláintecare </em><span class=”s1″><em>Report </em>noted that in August 2016, </span>170 referred patients were waiting for over 12 months to be seen by CAMHS. By September, some 2,333 were awaiting a first ap<span class=”s1″>pointment referral, with 317 waiting more than one year, according </span><span class=”s1″>to HSE data. </span>In some areas, waiting lists for access to care are as long as 18 <span class=”s1″>months.</span>

<p class=”p1″><span class=”s1″>According to figures supplied to the <strong><em>Medical Independent </em></strong>(<strong><em>MI</em></strong>) by the HSE, some 12 child and adolescent patients travelled abroad </span>for mental health treatment in <span class=”s1″>2017 under the Treatment Abroad Scheme.</span>

<p class=”p1″><span class=”s1″>Staffing within CAMHS nation</span>ally is at just 52 per cent of the level recommended in <em>A Vision for Change </em>(2006) and an extra <span class=”s1″>460 posts in CAMHS are required </span>to meet the recommendations of <span class=”s1″>the strategy.</span>

<p class=”p1″>A public consultant paediatric <span class=”s1″>psychiatrist, who spoke to <strong><em>MI </em></strong>on a range of issues affecting CAMHS, </span>highlighted that in some cases there are “adult psychiatrists <span class=”s1″>who have no specific child psychi</span>atry recognition with the Medical Council working with young peo<span class=”s1″>ple”.</span>

<span class=”s1″>Speaking to <strong><em>MI </em></strong>on condition of </span>anonymity, the psychiatrist commented: “The HSE has knowing<span class=”s1″>ly employed psychiatrists without appropriate expertise or qualifications in child psychiatry… are par</span>ents aware their children are not <span class=”s1″>in fact seen by a specialist?”</span>

<p class=”p1″>It is understood that in certain cases, adult psychiatrists have <span class=”s1″>been hired due to HSE difficulties in recruiting child and adolescent psychiatrists.</span>

<p class=”p1″><span class=”s1″>Asked by <strong><em>MI </em></strong>how many CAMHS staff have specific training in child </span>and adolescent psychiatry, a HSE <span class=”s1″>spokesperson said: “We do not collect this information nationally.”</span>

<p class=”p1″><strong><em>MI </em></strong>also queried how many adult psychiatrists are employed in CAMHS. “We do not have ac- cess to this information”, the <span class=”s1″>HSE replied.</span>

<p class=”p1″>President of the College of Psychiatrists of Ireland and Consultant Psychiatrist Dr John Hillery said that patients are entitled to <span class=”s1″>be seen by a specialist and should only be seen by a non-specialist if supervised by a specialist.</span>

<p class=”p1″><span class=”s1″><strong><em>See feature pages 4-6</em></strong></span>

Leave a Reply

Latest Issue
The Medical Independent 20th February
The Medical Independent 20th February 2024

You need to be logged in to access this content. Please login or sign up using the links below.

Most Read