Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Mind the gap - changing from young people's to adults' mental health services

At some point children and teenagers with mental-health problems move from being treated by child and adolescent mental-health services (CAMHS) to being treated by adult services. A new study by researchers at the University of Warwick suggests that this transition might not always go as smoothly as it should. The study looked at 154 people who were making the move from CAMHS to adult services. It found that only 58% of participants actually moved across from one service to another. People with a history of severe mental illness, being on medication, or who had been admitted to hospital were more likely to make the transition than those with neurodevelopmental disorders, emotional/neurotic problems and emerging personality disorders. A fifth were discharged without being seen. Information transfer was hampered by a lack of understanding of each other's services, inconsistent documentation, mismatched computer systems and lengthy waiting lists.

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