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RCPCH statement on Child Mental Health

1st September 2020

Mental health issues are increasingly common among children and young people—suicide is now the leading cause of death for both males and females aged five to 19 years old, and one in eight people among this age group is currently living with a mental health condition. 

Children and young people in vulnerable groups are even more at risk, including LGBTQ+ people, low income households, children in care, and those with parental mental health issues, special educational needs, on child protection plans, or in the criminal justice system. 

Underinvestment in mental health is a longstanding concern. This has been amplified by the pandemic due to the extra stress caused by prolonged school closures, social isolation, adverse social and environmental circumstances, and a lack of access to usual support services. 

RCPCH’s Assistant Officer for Mental Health and Wellbeing, Dr Karen Street, says: “Our key message is that our patients’ mental health is our business. There is a joint responsibility to provide necessary services across the children’s workforce. 

“In the wake of COVID-19, many children and young people will have greater mental health support needs. As services begin to recover, the time is ripe to connect across the entire child health workforce and local, regional, and national boundaries. Together, we can work to develop improved and integrated mental health services.” 

In its statement, the College includes a number of recommendations, including: 

  • All paediatric teams should have a nominated lead for mental health. 
  • Paediatric training must include promotion of wellbeing in children and young people and management of common mental health issues. 
  • Paediatricians with higher exposure to issues need more extensive training and support. 
  • Paediatricians should not be expected to work in isolation when managing severe cases of mental illness. 
  • Use of mental health screening tools in higher risk people should be considered. 

The College will also continue to support mental health through its activities, including: 

  • Having an Assistant Officer for Mental Health on its Health Improvement Committee. 
  • Working with NHSE and HEE to implement of the NHSE Long Term Plan. 
  • Developing training through its Child Mental Health Specialty Advisory Committee. 
  • Developing the Progress curriculum for all paediatric trainees to include mental health. 
  • Partnering with MindEd to produce a paediatric ‘learning path’. 

Read the College’s full position statement on the role of paediatricians in mental health here

Let them play…

Allowing young children to play with their friends must be prioritised as soon as possible when lockdown is eased.

This was the argument made by this really interesting post published recently on the ACAMH Blog.

The article discusses the fact that while the Covid-19 pandemic has posed a lower risk of physical health problems for children, it has transformed the social lives of children more rapidly than anyone could have imagined.

A recent rapid systematic review concluded that loneliness and social isolation adversely affect children’s short- and long-term mental health (Loades, M. E. et al). 

You can read the full post on the blog by clicking here.

The RCPCH conference 2021

This year’s RCPCH conference will take place ONLINE between the 15th and 17th of June.

The theme is:
Challenges, opportunities and solutions for Child Heath in the COVID-19 era’.

Click here for more information.


The PMHA at the conference

The PMHA session is on Wednesday 16th June (15:30-18:00) and will be run jointly with Child Protection Special Interest Group. The theme is ‘The impact of COVID on child mental health and on safeguarding’

Abstract submissions are open – please submit abstracts by the 10th March using the link below:

https://www.rcpch.ac.uk/news-events/rcpch-conference-2021-abstract-submission

We look forward to hosting,
and seeing as many of you as possible there! 

More interesting events from Healthcare Conferences UK

They are pleased to offer a 10% discount with code ‘hcuk10pmha

Preventing Suicide in Young People & Children

FRIDAY 23 APR 2021. VIRTUAL, Online

Chaired by Dr Jon Goldin, Consultant, Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist, Great Ormond Street Hospital NHS Trust, and Vice Chair, Faculty of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Royal College of Psychiatrists this Fourth National conference focuses on Saving Young Lives – Preventing Suicide in Children and Young People. Through national updates, case studies from multi-agency settings and lived experience insight, this conference will look at progress being made and what needs to change to improve resilience, wellbeing, mental health support and effectively prevent suicide in children and young people. The conference will use case studies to demonstrate interventions that work in health, schools, universities and multi-agency settings. The conference will examine implementation of the self harm and suicide prevention competence framework for children and young people and will also discuss offering tailored support to families bereaved by suicide in line with the NICE recommendations. 

For further information and to book your place visit https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/preventing-suicide-in-young-people-children 
or email kerry@hc-uk.org.uk
Follow the conference on Twitter #savingyounglives
Masterclass: Therapeutic Interventions to Reduce the Harmful Effects of Adverse Childhood Experiences

THURSDAY 22 APR 2021 VIRTUAL, Online

This CPD certified programme will outline the increasing evidence of the impact of Adverse Experiences of Childhood (ACEs) on the health and well-being of children and young people extending into adult life. There is a growing demand for interventions to prevent their harmful effects.Research will be reviewed about the impact of ACEs through population studies, intergenerational studies, and specific groups – self harming, mental health, and substance abuse, offending, and violent behaviour.

For further information and to book your place visit https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/therapeutic-interventions-adverse-childhood-experiences 
or email kerry@hc-uk.org.uk
Improving Mental Health Support for Asylum Seekers and Refugees

FRIDAY 23 APR 2021. VIRTUAL, Online

We are pleased to announce the Eighth Annual Conference to focus on improving Mental Health Support for Asylum Seekers and Refugees. Angelina Jalonen Head of Therapeutic Services The Refugee Council will give a national update which will look at supporting refugees through the hardship and isolation due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and focus sessions will cover; multi-tiered and comprehensive MHPSS Systems & Psychological First Aid, working with refugees to improve mental health, and best practice examples of specialist clinical interventions.

For further information and to book your place visit https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/improving-mental-health-support-for-asylum-seekers-and-refugees  
or email kerry@hc-uk.org.uk
Follow the conference on Twitter #RefugeeMentalHealth
Improving Access, Treatment and Support for People with a Diagnosis of Personality Disorder

THURSDAY 20 MAY 2021. VIRTUAL, Online

This conference focuses on Improving Access, Treatment and Support for People with a Diagnosis of Personality Disorder both during and beyond Covid-19. You will have the opportunity to network with colleagues who are working to improve access and treatment for people with personality disorder, self assess and reflect on your own practice and gain CPD accreditation points contributing to professional development and revalidation evidence.

For further information and to book your place visit https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/personality-disorder  
or email nicki@hc-uk.org.uk
Follow the conference on Twitter #PersonalityDisorder2021
Masterclass: Therapeutic work with children and young people suffering child sexual abuse and exploitation

THURSDAY 20 MAY 2021. VIRTUAL, Online

This Masterclass programme, facilitated by Dr Arnon Bentovim and Carol Jolliffe, will help practitioners working in social care, health, education and youth justice to deliver effective therapeutic work with children subject to sexual abuse and exploitation. The approach recognises that sexual abuse and exploitation occur in a context of significant adversity, and is based in Trauma Informed Practice which recognises common responses to adversity in childhood are traumatic, and such responses in association with a variety of social, psychological and genetic influences can trigger an extensive set of complex overlapping physical, behavioural and mental health responses. Practitioners in social care, health, education and youth justice who need to develop their skills in working with children and young people who have been sexually abused and exploited should attend.

For further information and to book your place visit https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/therapy-child-abuse
or email kerry@hc-uk.org.uk
Masterclass: Childhood Neglect: Approaches to understanding, assessment and interventions

THURSDAY 27 MAY 2021. VIRTUAL, Online

This masterclass, facilitated by Carla Thomas and Carol Jolliffe, Child and Family Training, will consider the complexity of understanding, managing and modifying the impact of childhood neglect. It will support practitioners and managers in considering interventions to modify neglectful parenting and to increase children’s resilience. All practitioners, and managers, working with children and families in Health, Education, Social Care, in the Public and Voluntary sector should attend.

For further information and to book your place visit https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/childhood-neglect
or email kerry@hc-uk.org.uk

Guardian Article about Covid-19 and mental health

There was an interesting article about the Coronavirus and mental health in the UK published in the comment section of the The Guardian today. Have a read and tell us what you think…

Has the pandemic really caused a ‘tsunami’ of mental health problems?

Richard Bentall, Professor of Clinical Psychology: University of Sheffield

“With a team of experts from the Universities of Sheffield, Ulster, Liverpool, UCL and Royal Holloway and Bedford College I have been monitoring the mental health of the UK population since the beginning of the crisis. Looking at our findings, we think that this tsunami narrative is misleading. If accepted uncritically, it could undermine efforts to protect the health of the population and also our ability as a nation to recover once the crisis is over. Here is why….

Click here to read the complete article

Children’s Mental Health Week, 1-7 February 2021

The PMHA is delighted to be supporting #ChildrensMentalHealthWeek, organised by the charity @Place2Be. Of course, for those of us in the PMHA, every week is Children’s Mental Health Week, but this yearly event is an excellent opportunity to raise awareness of this issue more widely and start some important conversations at work and at home.

This past year has been an incredibly difficult one for many families, and we are starting to see more and more evidence about the effects that COVID-19, lockdown and school closures have had on children and young people in the UK and around the world. A poll at our annual meeting last week found that 97% of attendees had seen a change in children and young people presenting in acute crisis during COVID-19, with more than 7 in 10 seeing both increased numbers and increased complexity of presentation. And for every child presenting to hospital, there are likely countless more struggling at home.

“Express Yourself”

The theme of this year’s Children’s Mental Health Week is “Express Yourself”. Many of us can find it hard to talk about mental health, particularly with children and young people. Place2Be have compiled an excellent set of resources – available at https://www.childrensmentalhealthweek.org.uk/schools-and-youth-groups/ – to help start these conversations and empower children to express themselves in different ways.

Many young people may wish to seek support outside their immediate friends and family. @YoungMindsUK has compiled an excellent list of support services available by phone, text, email and web chat, available here: https://youngminds.org.uk/find-help/get-urgent-help/ 

Of course, it’s not only children who need help and support during these challenging times. @LittleGoodDeed is a campaign aimed at helping parents and carers who may be struggling during lockdown. If you can, try to take the opportunity this week to reach out to a friend, colleague or family member who may be struggling. If you’re struggling yourself, see https://www.littlegooddeed.org.uk/getsupportnow for a list of useful resources you can access online or by phone.

We at the PMHA will continue to share useful resources throughout this week and beyond, so don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and Facebook and, if you haven’t, sign up to become a PMHA member. We look forward to hearing more about how you’ve marked Children’s Mental Health Week and – crucially – how you keep that important work going in the weeks and months to come.

More Interesting Events from Healthcare Conferences UK

They are pleased to offer a 10% discount with the code ‘hcuk10pmha

Reducing and improving the use of Restrictive Interventions & Practice: Managing Acute Disturbance, Violence and Aggression

WEDNESDAY 24 FEB 2021. VIRTUAL, Online

This virtual conference will focus on reducing restrictive interventions in line with national guidance and ensuring adherence to the National NICE Quality Standard on Violence and Aggression. This focus on reducing restrictive practice is particularly important in light of COVID-19 where mental health services have reported spikes in incidents of physical restraint or seclusion on patients, driven by covid-19 restrictions (HSJ 5th June 2020).
For further information and to book your place visit https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/restrictive-interventions-practice 
or email kate@hc-uk.org.uk
Follow the conference on Twitter #reducingrestrictivepractice
Core skills for practitioners working with Children and Young People’s anxiety, depression, & traumatic symptoms: A Modular Approach

WEDNESDAY 24 FEB 2021. VIRTUAL, Online

The Masterclass will present the Hope for Children and Families (HfCF) modular approach to developing core therapeutic skills to work with: the most common forms of mental health problems in childhood: anxiety, depression, and traumatic symptoms : the over-lapping mental health responses to the stressful and traumatic responses to COVID-19 and its impact on children and young people’s lives. Practitioners in all social care, health, education/schools and youth justice settings who need to develop their skills in working with children and young people who have problems with their mental health should attend this masterclass.
For further information and to book your place visit
https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/virtual-online-courses/cyp-depression-modular-approach 
or email kate@hc-uk.org.uk
Reducing the Harmful effects of exposure to Domestic Violence & Abuse on Children and Young People

MONDAY 1 MAR 2021. VIRTUAL, Online

This CPD certified masterclass will consider the role of toxic stress and trauma in the pathway to interpersonal violence between parents, and the climate of violence which harms the mental health and development of children and young people. A trauma-informed model of identification, risk assessment, protection and modular intervention will be outlined to reduce the harmful effects of Domestic Violence and Abuse.  The masterclass will also cover the Trauma-Informed Care (TIC) approach – a program, organization, or system that realises the widespread impact of trauma and understands potential paths for recovery; and responds by fully integrating knowledge about trauma into policies, procedures, and practices. 
For further information and to book your place visit
https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/domestic-violence-children-young-people  
or email kerry@hc-uk.org.uk
Core skills for practitioners working with Children and Young People’s disruptive and challenging behaviour: A Modular Approach

WEDNESDAY 3 MAR 2021. VIRTUAL, Online

This masterclass can be attended as a stand alone course, or to complement attendance at Core skills for practitioners working with Children and Young People’s anxiety, depression, and traumatic symptoms with the same facilitators and modular approach. Practitioners in social care, health, education and youth justice who need to develop their skills in working with children and young people who present with disruptive and challenging behaviour in the home, community and residential contexts should attend this virtual masterclass.
For further information and to book your place visit https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/cyp-disruption-modular-approach 
or email kate@hc-uk.org.uk
Decision making using the Safeguarding Children Assessment and Analysis Framework

THURSDAY 4 MAR 2021. VIRTUAL, Online

This virtual masterclass, facilitated by Fay Berry and Stephen Pizzey, explores decision making in complex child protection and safeguarding cases using the Safeguarding Children Assessment and Analysis Framework (SAAF).  Experienced professionals with responsibility for making or contributing to assessments of children and families where there are ongoing safeguarding concerns, including staff in children’s social care, CAMHS, health, education, police, probation, expert witnesses, children’s guardians and independent social workers should attend this masterclass.
For further information and to book your place visit https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/safeguarding-children-framework 
or email kerry@hc-uk.org.uk
Masterclass: Safeguarding Children Level 3 – NHS Level 4

FRIDAY 12 MAR 2021. VIRTUAL, Online

The course will explore child protection conferences, preparing child protection plans and the role of core groups to ensure the best outcomes for children at risk of harm. You will have the opportunity to take part in a simulated Case Conference based on a detailed case study.The aim of the course is that you will have a clear understanding of the assessment and decision-making processes and a sound grasp of the principles and processes for effective collaboration. You will also gain skills in preparing for the Case Conference including how to write a formal report, identifying what is and what isn’t evidence-based information and how to challenge decisions.
For further information and to book your place visit
https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/masterclass-safeguarding-children-level-3-nhs-level-4 
or email kerry@hc-uk.org.uk
Therapeutic work with children and young people suffering child sexual abuse and exploitation

WEDNESDAY 17 MAR 2021. VIRTUAL, Online

This Masterclass programme, facilitated by Dr Arnon Bentovim and Carol Jolliffe, will help practitioners working in social care, health, education and youth justice to deliver effective therapeutic work with children subject to sexual abuse and exploitation. The Masterclass will present the Hope for Children and Families modular approach to developing core therapeutic skills to work with the most common forms of sexual abuse currently recognised including sexual abuse perpetrated in the family and family environment, and sexual exploitation of vulnerable children and young people, in institutional contexts, on-line, and in gangs.Practitioners in social care, health, education and youth justice who need to develop their skills in working with children and young people who have been sexually abused and exploited should attend.
For further information and to book your place visit
https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/therapy-child-abuse 
or email kerry@hc-uk.org.uk
Facilitating Effective Assessment of Children

TUESDAY 23 MAR 2021. VIRTUAL, Online

This virtual masterclass, facilitated by David Glasgow and Bill Joyce, will update delegates on principles of child assessment and include, and train, attendees in the use of This Much!, which is a simple to use but very effective app for eliciting information from children on any topic. It is based on well-established assessment procedures, but is interactive, allowing children to rate people, places, experiences, and sensations using an easily customised scale. The course includes a licensed copy of This Much! for Mac or Windows, which will form the basis of hands-on learning on how to use this tool. 
For further information and to book your place visit https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/covid-assessment-children  
or email kerry@hc-uk.org.uk
Eating Disorders Summit 2021: Improving Access, Treatment & Recovery Outcomes

WEDNESDAY 24 MAR 2021. VIRTUAL, Online

The NHS Long Term Plan has demonstrated a commitment to improve support and treatment for people with eating disorders. This conference focuses on making that plan a reality through developing services for Eating Disorders: improving access, treatment and recovery outcomes, and meeting the national standards for children, young people and adult services.There is an extended focus this year on Eating Disorders in boys and men with Beat estimating they account for 25% of all eating disorders. You will hear from James who has lived experience in eating disorders, and from a service working to reduce stigma and improve outcomes for boys and men with eating disorders. The conference will also update delegates on the FREED Service and early intervention “The investment in the early intervention – First Episode Rapid Early Intervention for Eating Disorders (FREED) – service is part of the NHS Long Term Plan commitment to provide an additional £1 billion a year by 2023/24 to expand and improve community mental health care so adults, including those with an eating disorder, can get earlier access to care, as close to home as possible.” NHS England November 2020
For further information and to book your place visit https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/eating-disorders  
or email nicki@hc-uk.org.uk
Follow the conference on Twitter #EatingDisorders2021
If you have any events related to Paediatric Mental health you would like us to tell people about, send us an email.

The PMHA Annual Meeting is this week

A reminder that the PMHA Annual Meeting 2021 is taking place ONLINE on Thursday and Friday of this week.

The meeting has a great line-up of talks and presentations relating to different aspects of paediatric mental health and is an excellent way to connect with others working in this field.

Don’t miss out on this excellent annual event. If you haven’t registered yet but would like to attend either of the days, then you can still do so by clicking here.

We look forward to seeing you later this week!

Updates to the programme for the PMHA Annual Meeting

We’ve updated the programme for the PMHA Annual Meeting, adding an exciting new talk to the already fantastic line up.

Interactive Session 1: COVID and mental health-impact and recovery.
Dr Max Davie, Consultant Community Paediatrician, Lambeth Community & Dr Rory Conn, Consultant Child & Adolescent Liaison Psychiatrist, Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital.

This interesting and extremely topical session will take place in the afternoon of the second day (Friday January 29th) between 13.30 and 14.15.

The PMHA’s Annual Winter meeting will take place online this year over the two days of Thursday 28th and Friday 29th January – the end of this month.

You can see the full programme for the meeting here.

And you can register to attend here.

Interesting Upcoming Events from Healthcare Conferences UK

A 10% discount can be requested by quoting ‘HCUK10pmha‘ when booking.

Masterclass: Children’s Safeguarding – Learning from inquiries, serious case reviews and inspections

TUESDAY, 26th JANUARY, 2021 (ONLINE)

This masterclass, facilitated by Carla Thomas and Stephen Pizzey, Child and Family Training, gives an opportunity for delegates to review the findings from inquiries, serious case reviews, safeguarding practices reviews and inspections regarding multi-agency safeguarding practice and consider the implications for their agencies policies and practice. Key learning objectives include considering the history of reviews in relation to child’s death and serious harm, and how some of these led to key changes in legislation and guidance. Review thresholds and processes for serious case and child safeguarding practices reviews.        

For further information and to book your place visit https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/children-safeguarding-findings   
or email kerry@hc-uk.org.uk
Masterclass: Therapeutic work with children and young people suffering child sexual abuse and exploitation

WEDNESDAY, 27th JANUARY, 2021 (ONLINE)

This Masterclass programme, facilitated by Dr Arnon Bentovim and Carol Jolliffe, will help practitioners working in social care, health, education and youth justice to deliver effective therapeutic work with children subject to sexual abuse and exploitation. Practitioners in social care, health, education and youth justice who need to develop their skills in working with children and young people who have been sexually abused and exploited should attend. The programme will present an innovative approach, the development of a Common Practice Elements approach which capitalises on the knowledge embedded in evidence-based treatments identifying evidenced-based therapeutic procedures and integrates them into a Library of Modules.

For further information and to book your place visit https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/therapy-child-abuse 
or email kerry@hc-uk.org.uk
Masterclass: Childhood Neglect: Approaches to understanding, assessment and interventions

WEDNESDAY, 10th FEBRUARY, 2021 (ONLINE)

This masterclass, facilitated by Carla Thomas and Carol Jolliffe, Child and Family Training, will consider the complexity of understanding, managing and modifying the impact of childhood neglect. It will support practitioners and managers in considering interventions to modify neglectful parenting and to increase children’s resilience. All practitioners, and managers, working with children and families in Health, Education, Social Care, in the Public and Voluntary sector should attend.

For further information and to book your place visit https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/childhood-neglect
or email kerry@hc-uk.org.uk
Masterclass: Therapeutic Interventions to Reduce the Harmful Effects of Adverse Childhood Experiences

FRIDAY, 12th FEBRUARY, 2021 (ONLINE)

This CPD certified programme will outline the increasing evidence of the impact of Adverse Experiences of Childhood (ACEs) on the health and well-being of children and young people extending into adult life. There is a growing demand for interventions to prevent their harmful effects. Research will be reviewed about the impact of ACEs through population studies, intergenerational studies, and specific groups – self harming, mental health, and substance abuse, offending, and violent behaviour.  Facilitated by Arnon Bentovim, who trained at the Maudsley Hospital/Institute of psychiatry as a Psychoanalyst, and subsequently became involved in the growing interest in the systemic/family therapy field. He helped to establish the Association and Institute of Family Therapy, and researched measures of family functioning, and clinical approaches with colleagues at the Institute of Child Health and Great Ormond Street Children’s hospital.

For further information and to book your place visit https://www.healthcareconferencesuk.co.uk/conferences-masterclasses/therapeutic-interventions-adverse-childhood-experiences  
or email kerry@hc-uk.org.uk

Paediatricians warn parents to be alert to signs of eating disorders

Paediatricians have seen a huge rise in cases of anorexia nervosa and other food restriction disorders in this age group, with some reporting a doubling, tripling or even quadrupling of cases compared with the same period last year.

For more information, please go to the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) website by clicking here.

Help and support

BEAT eating disorders charity has a lot of useful information on their website and their helpline is open over the festive period.