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EDP: Norfolk children’s services boss reveals ‘scandal’ over mental health beds for young people

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More important campaigning journalism from our local newspaper, the EDP:

Norfolk’s children’s services boss has revealed a lack of available mental health beds for youngsters meant she had to create a makeshift unit in a children’s home, so a 17-year-old could get desperately needed care.

And Sheila Lock said a 13-year-old spent a weekend in a police-guarded bed at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital last month because a suitable mental health bed could not be found.

She said last year, a lack of what are known as tier 4 beds for children, meant she had to call Ofsted for special dispensation to be allowed to vary the use of a children’s home, so the 17-year-old, deemed to be of high risk and in need of medical intervention, could use a bed there.

Ms Lock said: “This was a child at risk because of the state of their health and we had to think outside of the box. I rang [health minister] Norman Lamb and said ‘I have done this with this case, it’s not right but it is the best outcome for this child at this time’.”

In the other case, the council applied for a secure care order for a 13-year-old, but no beds were available. They ended up in a hospital bed, with a police guard.

Ms Lock said: “I think it is a scandal. The whole issue of children’s mental health is a national tragedy.”

Duplicitous Norman Lamb, as the irresponsible Minister for mental health, oversaw the cutting of mental health funding nationwide. Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) at Norman Lamb’s local mental health trust, Norfolk & Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT), suffered the deepest cuts in the country according to NHS Benchmarking.

Norman ‘mental health champion’ Lamb was so ‘passionate’ about mental health that he cut funding whilst claiming the opposite.

Click on the image below to read Dan Grimmer’s article in full on the EDP website:

EDP Norfolk children’s services boss reveals ‘scandal’ over mental health beds for young people

 

 

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One thought on “EDP: Norfolk children’s services boss reveals ‘scandal’ over mental health beds for young people

  1. Terry skyrme says:

    Norman Lamb in his election manifesto says the government has given an extra £1.25 billion to Childrens Mental Health Services. Where is it? What difference does it make? It’s terrible how we “professionals” have adapted to the norm of children, as a matter of course, being sent hundreds of miles from their homes and families to so-called specialist placements – private hospitals which treat children in isolation from their friends and families, and often without any contact with the community. Norman Lamb constantly bleats about how childrens services are fragmented but his government has cut the basic local authority services that children and families need. There is no long-term security for services, for staff, any more as everything can be put out to tender and taken over by a cheaper bidder.

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