Child Mental Health Waits get Worse Despite SNP Commitment

Child and adolescent mental health waiting times in NHS Lothian have worsened, despite the Scottish Government’s commitment to improve them a year ago.

The latest figures from ISD show that only 58.6% of patients in NHS Lothian are now being seen within 18 weeks, a decline since the previous quarter where 69.1% of children were seen within 18 weeks.

The statistics come exactly a year after the Scottish Government’s major commitment in the programme for government to improving mental health services for children and young people, specifically promising “speedier access to specialist care for those who need it.”

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

Michelle Ballantyne MSP commented: says:

“This is another disastrous set of mental health statistics from the SNP.

“Vulnerable children across Midlothian are waiting too long for access to vital treatment.

“The health secretary has already admitted that the SNP is doing too little too late to tackle child and adolescent mental health issues.

“Last year Nicola Sturgeon committed to improving mental health services for children but now more children are waiting longer, and more young people are tragically taking their own lives.

“The repeated promises of the SNP are nothing more than hot air – the failure of the SNP to manage our health service are incredibly disappointing.”