Children & Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS)

More information

Our opening hours are 9.00 am until 5.00 pm Monday to Friday.  A duty worker is available for information, advice and support between the hours of 9.00 am and 5.00 pm.

We have a team made up of:

  • Consultant Psychiatrist
  • Consultant Psychologist
  • Clinical Psychologists
  • Nurse Team Lead / Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Family Therapist
  • Community Mental Health Nurse
  • Clinical Nurse Therapists
  • Child & Adolescent Therapist
  • Speech & Language Therapists
  • Occupational Therapists 
  • Link Nurses
  • Administration and Reception staff

and we are often joined by

  • Medical Students
  • Psychology Trainees
  • Student Nurses

We have recently moved to electronic record keeping, and we would be happy to provide details of this on request should your patients / clients have any concerns regarding confidentiality.

Cases which should be referred include:

  • Complex neurodevelopmental disorders
  • Complex deliberate self harm
  • Depression (moderate to severe)
  • Eating disorders
  • Enduring sleep, feeding and toileting problems
  • Neuropsychiatric disorders
  • Obsessive compulsive disorders
  • Phobias 
  • Physical disorder with psychological effects
  • Psychiatric disorder and emotional problems in young people with learning disability
  • Psychotic disorder
  • Reaction to severe stress (adjustment disorders; PTSD)
  • Severe anxiety states

Referrals are accepted from agencies and departments providing a service for children and young people.  Referrals can be made for a child or young person up to their 18th birthday who may have a moderate or severe mental health problem.  These are defined as emotional, behavioural, or psychological difficulties of the child or young person which affect several areas of life (e.g. home and school).  We have a service level agreement which provides a service to children and young people from Cowal and Bute.  

Before making a referral, the agreement of the family and / or the young person should be obtained.  Other agencies making requests for assistance should inform the GP of the request.

All referrals received by this department are discussed twice weekly at our Gatekeeping Meetings and a decision will be made regarding whether referral is appropriate or should be signposted elsewhere.  If a referral is accepted we will send an opt-in letter in the first instance requesting that the patient contact this department in order to arrange a Choice Appointment with any available clinician. 

Choice Appointment

This is an initial assessment where details are gathered from the patient regarding presenting complaint, education, family and in some cases developmental history.  This appointment should last up to one hour.  Before the end of a Choice appointment a decision will be made as to whether CAMHS is the most suitable service.  Advice regarding safe care and crisis care is often given at Choice.  Following Choice, if patient requires additional assessment and intervention from CAMHS then they will be placed on our Partnership treatment list whereby the patient will be allocated a case manager in due course, depending on need and type of treatment required.  Should CAMHS not be the most appropriate service, patients will be signposted elsewhere.

Partnership Appointment

This is a more detailed assessment whereby the Case Manager will plan appropriate intervention with the patient and offer additional appointment. 

Our service works in partnership with many other services both statutory and voluntary.  We can offer advice and Consultation where this is appropriate.

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