Child And Adolescent Mental Health Services: national service specification

The Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) NHS Scotland national service specification outlining provisions young people and their families can expect from the NHS.

3. High Quality Interventions And Treatment That Are Right For Me

CAMHS has a specific role in the assessment and provision of interventions/treatment of children and young people's mental health problems and this section summarises the main components of CAMHS Tier 3 and Tier 4 services:

3.1 Provide recommendations for interventions and treatment options in consideration of:

  • Engagement, accessibility, flexibility and choice.
  • Age-appropriate best practice/evidence-based psychological intervention.
  • Environmental and occupational/educational interventions or support.
  • The availability of a multimedia prevention packages.
  • Psychosocial and Pharmacological and interventions.

3.2 Take account of children and young people's educational needs and, with informed consent, work with school and education authority staff to contribute to the child or young person's educational support. This will include responding to requests for assistance under the terms of the Additional Support for Learning Act.

3.3 Provide specific support for the mental health of Looked After Children, including support to the system of care (e.g. advice, consultation, training) and, via the Child's Plan and requests for assistance, children and young people who are experiencing mental health problems.

3.4 Provide a liaison mental health service to all children and young people who are receiving treatment in acute settings such as hospitals, including, in partnership with acute colleagues and other agencies, a robust clinical emergency service with out of hours, weekend and bank holiday capability.

3.5 Provide and/or contribute to a 24/7 mental health crisis response service for children and young people, including support and advice to front line services, assessment and interventions/treatment for mental health crisis presentations, and access to inpatient medical and/or psychiatric care.

3.6 CAMHS Locality Teams (Tier 3) will provide services for:

  • Severe Depression and Anxiety
  • Moderate to severe emotional and behavioural problems, including severe conduct, impulsivity, and attention disorders
  • Psychosis
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorders
  • Eating disorders
  • Self-harm
  • Suicidal behaviours
  • Mental health problems with comorbid drug and alcohol use
  • Neuropsychiatric conditions
  • Attachment disorders
  • Post-traumatic stress disorders
  • Mental health problems comorbid with neurodevelopmental problems
  • Mental health problems where there is comorbidity with mild/moderate intellectual disabilities and/ or comorbid physical health conditions, additional support needs and disabilities including sensory impairments
  • Children and young people in the above categories and who require Intensive Home Treatment and Support

3.7 CAMHS Locality Teams (Tier 3) response to the above, but will also be supported by services providing additional and specific expertise to children and young people supported in CAMHS who, have more complex and/or specific difficulties. These services are often delivered across board boundaries, regionally or nationally and include Psychiatric In Patient Units. The areas of specific expertise required are children and young people with mental health problems and

  • an intellectual disability
  • forensic risks and needs
  • experience of complex trauma
  • an eating disorder
  • an admission to an acute hospital
  • substance misuse
  • questioning or experiencing distress about their gender
  • placement in secure care (where secure care facilities are within the relevant NHS Board)
  • a complex neurodevelopmental problems
  • an early onset psychosis
  • a need for inpatient psychiatric care



Back to top