The South London Mental Health and Community Partnership (SLMHCP) has been awarded a contract to manage the budgets and care for specialist child and adolescent mental health services across south London.
The Partnership – made up of Oxleas NHS Foundation Trust, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, and South West London and St George’s Mental Health NHS Trust – has been working as a hospital group since 2015, collaborating to improve quality, outcomes and efficiency.
NHS England made the announcement that the Partnership was one of five successful bids to both provide and manage the commissioning of Tier 4 CAMHS services across the country. Tier 4 services are those for young people with the most clinically complex and challenging emotional, behavioural or mental health problems. The news forms the second wave of NHS England’s drive to put local managers and clinicians in charge of both managing budgets and providing care for specialist and mental health services.
The aim of the Partnership’s Tier 4 CAMHS programme is to transform services by improving the experience of the patients and carers who use them, their overall quality, efficiency and productivity. Delivering this vision will require a new approach to commissioning and delivering these services.
Since 1 April 2017, South London Mental Health and Community Partnership has been delivering a new care model for forensic mental health services with the primary aim to bring patients who are being treated outside of the area back into local care as well as reducing costs. The partnership’s new care model for CAMHS will run in a similar way and will include:
- A virtual hub to manage patients and contracts across the partnership and wider provider network. The hub will oversee quality of care and manage the return of children and young people into care that is nearer their homes in south London.
- A single point of access for all patients who need specialist mental health treatment including assessment and triage and strengthening the capacity of community services.
- Investment in out of hospital care pathways.
- A programme of work to reduce inequalities in the system and improve the quality, safety and effectiveness of treatment.
- Increased specialisation of care with some expert resources for use across the whole of south London, such as psychiatric intensive care, so that we see an improvement in the outcomes for children and young people with very complex needs.
Dr Matthew Patrick, one of the Senior Responsible Officers for the Partnership, welcomed the news saying:
“On behalf of the Partnership I am very pleased that we have been given a shared opportunity to help improve the life chances of young people locally and to help prevent them from becoming the next generation of service users.