Hertfordshire leading the way in Children and Adolescentsí Mental Health Services

The Hertfordshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (HPFT) is in one of only three collaboratives to win a coveted contract awarded by the government for a share of a £54 million investment.

In February 2012, Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, and Health Minister Paul Burstow announced in February 2012 that the ambitious Children and Young People's Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (CYP IAPT) programme will receive an extra investment of up to £22 million, (on top of the £32 million already invested), over the next three years.

The government received 130 expressions of interest from across England for a share of this funding. 13 collaborative groups applied. Five were shortlisted and interviewed. Three collaborative groups were awarded contracts and HPFT was one of these!

Their bid was put together as a consortium approach with HPFT working closely with NHS Hertfordshire in a collaborative approach which particularly impressed the Department of Health.

The Choice and Partnership Approach (CAPA), and CAMHS Outcomes Research Consortium (CORC) met the bid criteria by providing a good service delivery model and using clinical outcome measures and service user feedback tools.  Both these systems were the first of their kind and were adopted elsewhere as examples of best practice and which particularly impressed the Department of Health.

The bid team was lead by Dr Duncan Law, Consultant Clinical Psychologist, from East Herts Specialist Children and Adolescents Mental Health Services, Janet Arris (Service Manager), and the Commissioner for the Services, David Evans.

The CYP IAPT programme will ensure that the Children and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) use its resources in the most effective way, through efficient service delivery models and by ensuring better collaboration between CAMHS and children, young people their families, and their therapist.

It is vital to have an agreement at the start of the intervention so that everyone is clear as to what the young person and their family want to see as the desired outcome. This is where the service user feedback tools are vital to ensure that things are on track and to ensure things continue to head in the right direction.  We want to be held to account by service users and are setting up a service users’ council with Young Minds’ involvement. We want to empower young people so that they can agree the goals and reach them more often and faster than before.

HPFT will be working in partnership with Young Minds to roll out this programme across the rest of Hertfordshire during 2012 /13.

On 16 July, Health Minister Paul Burstow announced the second wave of CYP-IAPT at the first of the CYP-IAPT national conferences. The speakers included Dr Duncan Law from HPFT, who has been working closely with the Department of Health to develop and shape the CYP-IAPT programme nationally.

John Barfoot, Hertfordshire County Council's Deputy Cabinet Member for Children's Services, said: "Providing effective mental health support to children and adolescents in Hertfordshire is extremely important. Securing this additional funding for our Children and Young People's Improving Access to Psychological Therapies programme will allow us to get better support to vulnerable children. I would like to thank all the partners involved for their hard work on securing this contract."

Hertfordshire leading the way in Children and Adolescents’ Mental Health Services

Photo courtesy of YoungMinds


The Choice and Partnership Approach (CAPA): www.capa.co.uk/index.htm

CORC: www.CORC.uk.net

Children and Young Peoples Project: http://www.iapt.nhs.uk/cyp-iapt/

Young Minds Mag: www.youngminds.org.uk/members and http://www.youngminds.org.uk/

NHS: http://mediacentre.dh.gov.uk/2012/02/29/too-many-young-people-suffering-in-silence-with-mental-health-problems/

Link to transcript of Paul Burstow’s speech on IAPT for children and young people:

Duncan Law, CYP Faculty Chair and CYP IAPT representative, welcomes Paul Burstow’s announcement: http://www.bps.org.uk/news/better-mental-health-services-young-benefiting