"I wouldn't recommend their service"

About: Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust / Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services – Community(City)

(as a parent/guardian),

My step son suffers from mental health issues and has been recently seen by the CAMHS team at Bassestlaw hospital when he was admitted on the children's ward.

The outcome was utterly disappointing. The dr seemed not to listen to his mum who explained the chronic nature of his problems. My son has gone missing on several occasions - the police have been helpful and responded quickly each time and requested mental health assistance for him. He regularly self-harms and has anger problems which he cannot cope with himself. He has not been to school for weeks now and not showered or brushed his teeth in over a month. He is completely isolated and told the dr that he feels utterly miserable 90% of the time. All the dr seemed interested in was getting my son discharged and saying that he was not currently at risk of suicide although he had recently attempted this. The dr refused to diagnose my son with anything at all and seemed to say this behaviour was normal and understandable and so refused to offer any counselling or hope of further help. We are all devastated. A course of counselling could make all the difference to our child who is in severe need of support.

Over the past few months other professionals have been involved with my son, thanks to referrals made by our GP who is very frustrated with the CAMHS service. They all vociferously demanded help for him because they believe he will not improve without it. They clearly feel there is an urgent need for mental health or emotional well being intervention and made referrals. The CAMHS 'professional' failed to turn up to the meeting that was arranged, wasting the time of senior managers of agencies involved.

I can't believe this is the type of service the NHS is providing for a child who clearly needs help, and is asking for it. My son feels let down, like the rest of his family, and we are at breaking point with all the stress. I understand that CAMHS have had significant budget cuts but refusing to diagnose my son and refusing to help us due to lack of funding is unacceptable. I am planning to contact my MP in regard to this since I have lost all faith in the NHS helping my son. I wouldn't recommend their service to my worst enemy.

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Response from Nicola Dykes, CAMHS Service Manager, Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust

Good Morning Green135,

I am truly sorry to hear of your family's experience of the Child and Adolescent mental Health service, and the impact that this is having. If your son has an identifiable mental health difficulty, it is without doubt that a service should be offered. I am sorry that you have felt unsupported.

Could I request that you make contact with Kelly Quibell (Personal Assistant) 0115 9691300 ext 11314 so that we may arrange to discuss this matter further and identify a way forward.

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Update posted by Green135 (a parent/guardian)

Morning Kelly,

sorry not back sooner but we have our little 2 year old in intesive care in leicester. hes doing well but obviously we very tied up at moment and all our energy is being used to sort things out with all the boys. Will be in touch asap. many thanks for reply.