Assessing and managing risk at Chesterfield Royal Hospital’s Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS)

The Chesterfield Royal Hospital NHS Foundation Trust provides health services at the Chesterfield Royal Hospital and other facilities in Chesterfield, Derbyshire. The hospital offers a Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) with purpose-built spaces for all children and young people’s outpatient services.

The specialist CAMHS team is dedicated to supporting children and young people and offers assessments and treatments for a range of mental health problems including anxiety, depression, eating disorders, ADHD and psychosis.

Assessing and managing risk

As part of their services, clinicians meet with young people and their families to discuss their mental health and seek solutions.

During these visits, the team may carry out a risk assessment using the FACE Child & Adolescent Risk Assessment Suite (CARAS). This is used by all clinicians within CAMHS who receive comprehensive training on how to complete it.

To further inform risk assessment, clinicians, where required, can access the FACE Focused Schedules such as the Checklist for Risk of Aggression, the Sexually Harming Adolescent Risk Protocol, and the Eating Disorder Schedule. These can help save time by ensuring that in-depth assessment is only carried out where there is an identified level of risk.

The team may also provide the child or young person with a separate safety plan. The CARAS informs this, and a copy is held by the family as well as on their patient record.

The CARAS is a vital part of our assessment and formulation and often forms the basis for our interventions with young people.

Supporting multi-agency working

The assessments are held within the patient record and are available to clinicians working with that young person. With permission, the risk assessment is also shared with other agencies working with the child or young person. This helps reduce duplication and ensures time with the child or young person is not spent collecting already captured information.

The CARAS is considered a vital part of assessment and formulation for CAMHS at Chesterfield Royal Hospital and often forms the basis for their interventions with young people.

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