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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-12314: Michelle Ballantyne (South Scotland)

Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party

Date lodged: 6 November 2017

To ask the Scottish Government what its response is to reports that the national performance standard target for child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS) patients to be seen within 18 weeks is not being met on a regular basis, and when it expects to achieve this on a sustained basis.

Answered by: Maureen Watt 16 November 2017

Boards are continuing to reduce their waiting times below the standard, in the last quarter 13 of the 14 Boards in Scotland recorded an average waiting time within the 18 week standard with 8 of these recording an average wait of 9 weeks or lower - half the target waiting time. At the same time the increase in demand for CAMH services clearly shows that in the past there were far too many children who were unseen, and whose need was unmet and as the capacity and provision of services have increased we have seen a sustained increase in the numbers accessing treatment each quarter and this should be welcomed.

We remain determined to improve performance and we will continue to work with Boards to make sure that happens right across Scotland and announced an additional £150 million for mental health services up until 2020, and as part of this funding £4.6 million has been awarded to Healthcare Improvement Scotland to establish a Mental Health Access Improvement Support Team to work in partnership with Boards to deliver sustained improvements in access to CAMHS and psychological therapies services for all ages and ensure services are designed and delivered in the most efficient way.