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England: sharp rise in school mental health referrals

03 July 2018

Rising demand is placing the system under increased pressure, jeopardising thousands of kids’ wellbeing.

The number of referrals by schools seeking mental health treatment for pupils has risen by more than a third in the past three years.

The rise in demand for child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS) was revealed by a Freedom of Information request to NHS trusts in England by the NSPCC.

It revealed that 123,713 referrals were made by schools seeking professional mental health help between 2014-15 and 2017-18, of which 56% came from primary schools. On average, 183 referrals were made each school day over the past year.

And, where trusts provided the information, the charity also found almost one-third of referrals were declined CAMHS treatment.

It says rising demand is ‘placing the system under increased pressure, jeopardising the wellbeing of thousands of children and young people’.


123,713 referrals were made by schools seeking professional mental health help for their pupils.

56% came from primary schools

183 referrals were made each school day


bit.ly/ENG_NSPCC_referrals

Picture credit | Alamy | iStock

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