State-of-the-art new £1.5 million CAMHS centre officially opened

Apr 28, 2023

A new £1.5 million specialist centre transforming the way children and young people in Lanarkshire receive mental health care has been officially opened.

Maree Todd MSP, Minister for Social Care, Mental Wellbeing and Sport, this week opened the new Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) outpatient facility at Udston Hospital in Hamilton.

The state-of-the-art facility, hosted by Health & Social Care North Lanarkshire, assesses and treats young people up to 18 years old with emotional, behavioural or mental health difficulties.

The bespoke designed centre provides specialist services including:

  • CAMHS assessment
  • Neurodevelopmental treatments
  • Talking treatments
  • Psychiatry
  • Medication

A completely new facility specifically for young people, the new centre was developed with input from young people and their families, ensuring it’s tailored to meet their needs.

The Minister was shown the new waiting rooms, reception, treatment and consulting rooms while speaking with staff who have been carrying out an initiative to cut appointment waiting times.

Ms Todd said: “Improving the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people is one of the priorities set out in our recent policy portfolio statement and this £1.5 million specialist centre is transforming the way in which children and young people in Lanarkshire receive mental health care.

“We are determined to ensure young people are seen on time and have access to high quality services. While there is more to do, we have made record investment in CAMHS and the number of children starting treatment in the most recent quarter is comfortably the highest on record.

“We also have record numbers of staff providing more varied support and services to a larger number of children than ever before and we are now seeing evidence of significant and sustained progress in many areas across Scotland, including continuing record levels of activity and some of the most positive changes in waiting lists we have seen for over half a decade.”

Service user Molly commented on the new centre: “It’s nice and relaxed, and far better than the previous building.

“I like that it’s not the usual blue clinical chairs, instead there are nice sofas and TVs on walls. I like the whole design as it’s neat and tidy. That makes it much better and easier to express yourself.”

Ross McGuffie, chief officer, Health & Social Care North Lanarkshire, emphasised the importance of the new facility, stating: “This new specialist centre is an important part of the new, modern mental health service for Lanarkshire’s young people.

“We’re dedicated to ensuring we deliver services that make a positive impact on peoples’ lives. Our new facility is already ensuring we see young people in an environment that puts them at ease and is designed specifically for, and by, them.

“We know that mental health issues can have a significant impact on children and young people, and it is crucial that they receive the support they need as quickly as possible.

“This new facility is already enabling us to offer more timely and effective treatment, helping young people to get back on track and achieve their potential.

“The feedback on the new facility has been excellent and our staff deserve a lot of praise for not only playing a key role in developing the centre, but also for using it to its fullest to make significant progress in cutting waiting times for an initial assessment.

Pauline Izat, general manager, Specialist Children’s Health Services Unit, said: “The official opening of this wonderful new facility is a major milestone for CAMHS and the young people who use our services.

“This £1.5 million investment reflects Health & Social Care North Lanarkshire’s ongoing commitment to improving mental health services for our children and adolescents.

“Mental health is such an essential aspect of overall health, and we are dedicated to ensuring young people in our community have access to the care and support they need to navigate the challenges they face.”

The specialist centre has been supported by investment from the Scottish Government Recovery and Renewal Fund for Mental Health. v

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