Introducing telepsychiatry in Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services

Aneurin Bevan University Health Board

This project is under way, and will run until March 2020.

  • Project led by Aneurin Bevan University Health Board.
  • Aiming to reduce waiting times for young people admitted to hospital in Gwent with self harm or eating disorders.
  • Will use telepsychiatry to offer specialist assessment and safe discharge planning by the CAMHS team via videoconferencing as an alternative to face-to-face contact.

Young people who self harm or have eating disorders in Gwent currently face long waiting times for assessments due to travel distances between paediatric wards and Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) teams. 

This project from Aneurin Bevan University Health Board plans to address this issue by using telepsychiatry – delivering psychiatric assessment and care through videoconferencing. The aim is to be able to offer young people admitted to hospital with self harm or eating disorders the choice of a specialist assessment and safe discharge planning by the CAMHS team via videoconferencing, as an alternative to face-to-face contact. 

This innovative approach will allow CAMHS to input into case reviews and multidisciplinary team meetings, and provide better support to paediatric staff in hospital wards, especially those dealing with resistant and difficult cases. It will also offer the opportunity for psychiatrists to assess patients when a senior opinion is required.

Staff will be trained to use telepsychiatry and feel comfortable interviewing patients using this method. Patient information leaflets will be developed, and guidelines for staff on issues such as consent, interview setting and management, and back-up arrangements for if technology fails or patients become distressed.

The introduction of telepsychiatry has the potential to provide an efficient service that saves time, reduces cost and decreases stress for patients and staff. The project will be evaluated by measuring clinical outcomes, uptake and engagement, and staff, patient and carer satisfaction. If successful, it will provide evidence to support the rollout of telepsychiatry to other teams.

Contact information

For more information about this project, please contact Dr Alka Ahuja, Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist, Aneurin Bevan University Health Board.

About this programme

Programme

Innovating for Improvement

This programme supports up to 23 projects with up to £75,000 to test and develop innovative ideas and approaches, put them in...

You might also like...

Press release

Government urged to overhaul housing, transport and education policies to secure a healthy society

New report from the Health Foundation finds young people’s future health at risk

Article

Policy recommendations for young people's future health

Read about the nine expert organisations selected to provide a deep dive into seven key policy areas affecting young people's...

Working paper

How many young people are accruing the assets they need for a healthy transition into adulthood?

This working paper uses longitudinal datasets to explore how many young people are accumulating the key asset for future heal...

Kjell-bubble-diagramArtboard 101

Work with us

We look for talented and passionate individuals as everyone at the Health Foundation has an important role to play.

View current vacancies
Artboard 101 copy 2

The Q Community

Q is an initiative connecting people with improvement expertise across the UK.

Find out more