In February 2023, this new paper titled Review: Crisis responses for children and young people: a systematic review of effectiveness, experiences and service organisation (CAMH-Crisis) appeared in Child and Adolescent Mental Health journal. This reports on methods and findings from this study, which my colleague Dr Nicola Evans has led.
The journal asks for key practitioner messages, and these I’ve reproduced here:
- Due to rising demand and increasing healthcare waiting times, more CYP present at mental health services at crisis point. To improve care, it is important to understand the types of mental health crisis services and how CYP and their families experience support at these facilities.
- Findings from this systematic review indicate that CYP and their families are often unaware of available mental health services and how to access them. Children and young people should be involved in the development of public information about mental health services.
- Mental health support needs to be provided through different mechanisms such as face-to-face appointments, text, email, or telephone via a direct line with round-the-clock availability.
- Emergency departments (EDs) are often accessed at crisis point. EDs work well where care is provided in a calm and private environment by trained staff with experience in children’s and young people’s mental health.
- Improving accessible community based early interventions with clear pathways to designated clinical services might prevent CYP reaching mental health crises.