The CAMHS Team is our local NHS support service for children and young people. The service consists of a friendly and dedicated team of professionals from a range of professional backgrounds including doctors, psychologists, nurses and other experts who can assist with understanding and supporting young people who are feeling depressed, anxious or who may have conditions such as Autism or ADHD.
CAMHS is for children and young people aged 0-18 who live in Westminster. All of the staff in CAMHS have been specifically trained to work with children and young people with mental health problems. They can also provide support and information for parents and carer’s of children who may be suffering mental health problems
The service provides:
- Early Intervention Team: aims to support the emotional wellbeing of children and young people by ensuring their mental health needs are recognized and addressed at the earliest opportunity in the community. Provision includes training, consultation, assessment and short term treatment with a focus on early recognition and intervention for children and young people with emerging mental health difficulties. The EIT can offer support at local children’s centres and family hubs
- Specialist CAMHS: additional commissioned services for ‘Looked After Children’ (LAC) and Youth Offending Team (YOT).
- Community CAMHS: aims to assess and treat children and young people with moderate to severe mental health difficulties (including mental illness) and ADHD using evidenced-based treatments that is consistent with guidance and best practice. Community CAMHS is divided into three sub-teams:
- Emotional Treatment Team: works with young people presenting with emotional difficulties around mood such depression and anxiety
- Enhanced Treatment Team: works with young people who present with pervasive and persistent difficulties, often due to significant attachment and relationship difficulties.
- Neurodevelopmental and learning disability team: assesses and treats concerns associated with autism, ADHD, mild to severe learning disabilities with comorbid psychiatric difficulties, behaviour that challenges, developmental disorders and tic disorders.
We aim to offer an initial assessment for most children within 8-12 weeks with an additional wait of up to a further 8 weeks for treatment to commence (dependent on demand). These times will be shorter if the young person is in crisis or has an urgent condition. Emergency CAMHS services can be accessed 24/7 by visiting the A&E department of Chelsea and Westminster or St Mary’s Hospitals.
CAMHS offers talking therapies such as Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), Family Therapy, Psychotherapy and Medication. We offer a consultation service to other professionals, and specialist mental health input to other partner agencies including YOT.
We are based at Woodfield Road W9, but also have clinicians working in the borough’s Children’s Centres and Victoria Medical Centre.
How do you access this service?
Any professional working with children, young people and families can refer a child to the services. This is usually a GP, a member of schools staff or a social worker. If they are unsure whether they should make a referral or a concerned about a child or young person they can contact the service Mon-Fri between 9am and 5pm and speak to the duty CAMHS professional who can provide information and guidance. The duty CAMHS professional can arrange an urgent appointment where necessary. Parents can also make a self-referral by contacting Westminster CAMHS and asking to speak to the clinician on duty.