According to the latest figures released, only 71.2% of young people across Scotland were seen within the acceptable 18 week waiting period between January and March 2018
According to the latest figures released by NHS Scotland, three in 10 children are waiting more than the 18 week guidelines set in place to receive specialist mental health treatment. 35 children have reportedly waited for more than a year to be seen by an expert. Current guidelines require at least 90% of children are seen within 18 weeks of being referred.
The Scottish Children’s Services Coalition have highlighted only 0.48% of the NHS budget is spent on specialist child and adolescent mental health services (CAHMS).
Tayside was found to have seen just 40% of CAMHS patients within the target time period within the first three months of 2018, with patients waiting an average of 23 weeks.
Year on year, the number of children seen within the 18 week period during January to March has fallen from 83% in 2017, to just 71% in 2018, while service demand has shown no significant changes.
A spokesperson for SCSC said “These latest waiting time figures demonstrate that we are continuing to fail many of our children and young people with mental health problems, which is a national disgrace. No longer can mental health be viewed as a ‘Cinderella’ service and we must put money behind the rhetoric if we are to just keep pace with investment south of the border.
“It is clearly disappointing to note these newly released figures highlighting that the NHS in Scotland are failing to meet what is already a lengthy waiting time. This is no coincidence given that a very small proportion of the overall NHS and mental health budget is being spent on addressing the needs of children and young people.“