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Who are we?

At Sandwell CAMHS, we have 2 teams

Click below to read more about each team.

A bit about us

Sandwell CAMHS is a specialist mental health service commissioned to provide interventions to those children, young people and their families who are experiencing/most vulnerable to mental health problems and present with concerns that are severe and/or complex in nature.  We support young people aged between 5-18 years of age with a GP registered in the Sandwell area.

Within the service there are a range of staff, including community psychiatric nurses, family therapists, occupational therapists, psychiatrists, psychologists, psychotherapists and a social worker. There are two community psychiatric nurses who work with Looked After Children and nursing and psychology staff who work with individuals with an intellectual (learning) disability. Having this range of staff from a variety of backgrounds and experience means we are more able to care for someone’s individual needs.

How do we help?

When an appropriate referral is received we will offer the young person a choice appointment. Choice is an opt-in screening assessment which provides the young person and family/carers to explore their mental health needs with a CAMHS clinician. At the end of this appointment it may be that a specialist mental health service is not appropriate and we can therefore discuss alternative options and support the referral process to such services where possible.

If it is felt CAMHS would be helpful we will discuss appropriate interventions and support with the young person and their family. In most cases young people are offered a period of core partnership work, which usually involves attending CAMHS for approximately six sessions of individual work with an appropriate clinician. Our work aims to promote the positive mental health of children and young people in Sandwell.

A variety of therapies are available which may include talking-based therapy, cognitive behavioural therapy and creative therapy. Medication may also be appropriate and would be reviewed by one of the doctors in the team. Interventions will be offered based on presenting issues and where appropriate in line with guidelines set by the National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE). For example, family therapy is offered to Looked After Children (LAC) and individuals with an eating disorder.

[Download full Sandwell CAMHS information here]

A bit about us

The Sandwell CAMHS CAIT (Crisis Assessment and Intervention Team) functions with an overall aim to provide a timely service, able to respond both quickly and intensively to children / young people and their families/carers who require a tier 3+ approach.

The team seek to empower young people and their families by sharing responsibility for managing their difficulties, and by keeping them informed and involved in all aspects of their care & treatment. CAIT provides specialist, individualised input for those children and young people whose needs cannot be met by Tier 3 CAMHS services. Interventions are tailored to meet the specific needs of the child/young person and their family/carers. In order to provide safe, effective and integrated care, the team utilises a multi-agency approach, ensuring that information and responsibility are appropriately and effectively shared throughout the professional network.

How do we help?

We offer a specialist CAIT service 8am – 8pm 7 days a week, 365 days a year that is able to respond quickly and intensively to children and young people with an appropriate level of need (such as those children & young people who pose a significant risk to themselves in relation to psychological / emotional difficulties, those with emerging major mental illnesses and/or cases where tier 4 admission is being considered. CAIT can be accessed through A&E, Acute Paediatric Services and CAMHS only.

CAIT aims to provide screening to A&E within 2½ hours within Sandwell General Hospital and City Hospital.  Assessment will take place within 12 hours when the child/young person is deemed medically fit.  CAIT aims to reduce the average length of stay in an acute setting in a safe and contained approach.  CAIT interventions include detailed assessment, liaison and connection with supporting services.

Targeted treatment includes short term interventions (for example solution focused, CBT and brief systemic interventions) for up to 8 weeks or until the crisis period has subsided and is safe to transition to Tier 2/3 services.

Wherever possible children and young people who are experiencing crisis and / or complex presentations will be enabled to remain in their own homes, cultural settings and communities, whilst accessing specialist CAIT treatment.  We aim to reduce the likelihood of tier 4 inpatient admissions. Where a tier 4 admission is required we hope that the support of the CAIT will reduce the length of admission.  The team uses an approach that seeks to encourage the child/young person and their family/carers to retain and share responsibility for overcoming their difficulties.

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