Psychiatrist ‘workforce crisis’ damages CAMHS

07 November 2019

A psychiatric ‘workforce crisis’ is most acute in child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS), according to the latest census from the Royal College of Psychiatrists.

More than one in six CAMHS consultant psychiatrist posts are unfilled. In all, one in 10 consultant psychiatrist posts remain unfilled across Scotland – up from one in 16 in 2017.

The Scottish Government standard states that 90% of children and young people should start treatment within 18 weeks of referral to CAMHS.

However, the research found that just under seven out of 10 (69.7%) children and young people were seen within 18 weeks in the three months to June 2019, down from 73.6% for the previous quarter and 67.5% for the quarter ending June 2018.

A Scottish Children’s Services Coalition spokesperson described the figures as ‘deeply disturbing’.