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Boost for young people's mental health services

15 Aug 2013

Child and adolescent mental health services run by the West London Mental Health NHS Trust have been awarded funding to take part in a national programme which will improve the scope of mental health services available to local young people.

NHS England has awarded funds to twenty four sites in the UK to take part in the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) programme.

Dr Vijay Parkash, from West London Mental Health NHS Trust said: ”We know that most lifelong mental health problems start to develop by the age of 14 and early interventions can help someone to manage their condition or recover completely, which is why our services are so important.

“Through the new programme we will be able to offer quicker access to treatments for young people with depression and anxiety disorders. Once in the service our therapists will provide individual or group therapy sessions for conditions such as depression and anxiety disorders. Routine outcome measurement will be an important part of the service, helping us to provide the patient and our clinicians with accurate information about the progress being made.”

At West London Mental Health NHS Trust, we have been part of the national IAPT programme for adults for a number of years. Adults who use our existing IAPT services tell us that they value the flexible way we provide our services, either in person, over the phone and even by computer.

Dr Parkash adds: “We’re delighted to be able to provide innovative mental health services of this kind to local young people.”

Steve Shrubb, Chief Executive of the West London Mental Health NHS Trust said: “It’s excellent news that we’ve been successful in our bid to develop this new service for children and young people. One of the strengths of IAPT services is that they have robust outcomes measures, so it’s clear what works well for people and what works less well.

“As an organisation we will take the learning from our adult IAPT services to develop stronger evidence-based practice in our mental health services for younger people. This decision by NHS England to invest in West London Mental Health NHS Trust is testament to the quality of our staff and the strength of the relationships we’ve worked hard to develop with our clinical commissioning groups and local authority partners.”

Dr Parkash added: “We’re all very pleased to be spearheading this initiative. It is a success for everyone in our service who worked hard at putting the bid together and will offer benefits for young people in the communities we serve.”