Navigating the children and young people’s mental health system can be very daunting but the following resources could be very useful to parents trying to come to grips with it.
The first is a family survival guide produced by Bringing Us Together. It’s called Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) Tier 4 and it has been written by and for parents to provide information about the mental health care system for children and young people under 18 with a learning disability or autism and challenging behaviour, who are thought to be experiencing a mental health difficulty. It covers the period following the referral of a child or young person to a CAMHS inpatient unit for assessment and treatment. Patients accepted for CAMHS Tier 4 support are likely to have already been assessed in the community as having significant and urgent needs that require specialised help. Tier 4 services are for those with the highest or most complex needs.
The legal system underpinning the children and young people’s mental health system is very complicated and this is especially true for 16 and 17 year olds. A new book, Adolescent Mental Health Care and the Law by Camilla Parker has been written to demystify and clarify this area of law. In addition to providing a resource for legal advisers, such as those providing legal representation before the mental health tribunal, the book is also designed to be accessible to non-lawyers such as parents.