We are all aware of the current demand on NHS services and there’s a growing desire to find ways of supporting patient needs while also reducing the ongoing pressures on GPs and acute services.
This is what has driven Surrey Primary Care Network, Care Collaborative, to pilot a child and young person’s support service that offers children and their families the opportunity to talk and share their concerns and struggles.
The start-up team is made up of a CYP Social Prescriber, a CYP Health and Wellbeing Coach and Care Co-ordinator and provides non-clinical, personalised support aimed at assisting families to self-manage children’s conditions.
Among the problems the team can assist with are mild mental health problems, low mood, low self-esteem, bullying and behavioural problems. While they’re not able to offer counselling services they can offer a holistic approach and can provide valued support while children await referral appointments.
The project follows a similar successful pilot in neighbouring North Tandridge PCN and the two groups spend time collaborating and sharing their learnings.
At present the Care Collaborative team are receiving referrals for patients aged 11+ from GPs within the PCN, and there are plans to expand the cohort to under 11s once established. Together they cover practices that serve around 20,000 young people, and they have ambitions to help reduce young people’s mental health A&E attendance figures as well as support GPs in providing personalised care to young people in need.
The ultimate goal is to improve young people’s wellbeing using the NHS’s THRIVE framework. And just like the theme of Children’s Mental Health Week the aim is to ‘connect’ with young people and their families and understand what would make a difference to their mental wellbeing.
For more information about the service contact the CYP team.