Overview of the standards for integrated care pathways for child
and adolescent mental health services
The standards for integrated care
pathways for CAMH services have three main elements.
The process standards are aimed at
supporting NHS boards and partner agencies to lay essential
foundations on which to develop their ICPs. The standards are also
designed to ensure the involvement of all
including children, young people and
their parents/carers. They outline the infrastructure which must be
in place in order to develop, implement and use ICPs successfully:
the key tasks to be undertaken, and who is responsible.
Generic care standards
The generic care standards describe the
interactions and interventions that must be offered to all children
and young people who access CAMH services and their parents/carers.
Children and young people referred to specialist CAMH services may
already have been included in local staged intervention processes.
It is important to take full account of these when delivering care
through an ICP.
CAMH services might provide
consultation to the wider workforce around the child in relation to
children and young people with additional support needs.
Consultation could involve giving advice and support/training to
the workforce around the child and/or supporting further planning
and interventions. A generic ICP is suggested as the main framework
for child and adolescent mental health care. Condition-specific
elements can be added for children and young people with a
Service providers should ensure that
children, young people and their parents/carers are fully engaged
with CAMH services. It is recognised that ‘services should be
offered as near to home as possible and in a number of settings to
take account of the different needs and choices of children, young
people and their parents/carers and the required intervention. This
could include locations such as schools, homes and family centres,
which may be perceived as less stigmatising, as well as traditional
clinical settings’. For children and young people, it is important
that the ‘services provided should be appropriate for their age,
gender, sexual orientation, physical and developmental ability and
NHS boards and partner
agencies should develop a local plan to ensure that children
and young people, already receiving care from specialist CAMH
services, will have their care delivered through an ICP in the
ICPs should significantly contribute to
continuous quality improvement, and will help NHS boards and
partner agencies to consistently deliver care that is
‘person-centred, clinically effective and safe, for every person,
all the time’.
The service improvement standards are
designed to help ensure that ICPs are being implemented and
actively used for variance analysis, service redesign, training
analysis and, ultimately, demonstrating a positive impact on care.
It is acknowledged that not all
is bad, for example in the context of
clinical judgement in the assessment and treatment process.