(Report by Mr R Gough, Cabinet Member for Education and Health Reform and Mr P Leeson, Corporate Director for Education, Learning and Skills)
(Ms S Dunn, Head of Skills and Employability, was present for this item)
1. Mr Leeson introduced the report and advised that the first phase of the review and reorganising of the Preventative Referral Unit (PRUs) provision was held in 2013. The second and last phase of the review was the review of the provision of the Health Needs PRUs, one in East Kent; and one in West Kent. Those provisions addressed the needs for the pupils with long term health needs and mental health needs and included The Oakfields Unit, which was a CAMS Tier 4 hospital for the short term care of severely ill children. The review was about access and organisation; and the needs of young people that needed to be responded to. It was now expected that the physical medical short term needs of young people would be the responsibility of their mainstream school.
2. Mr Leeson and Ms Dunn responded to comments and questions by Members which included the following:
· In response to a question, Mr Leeson advised that the current Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS)contract was still in place but there were a number of things happening to improve it. Although Sussex Partnership worked to make some improvements regarding assessment waiting times and response times, all the data suggested that it was generally unsatisfactory. The concerns regarding CAMHS had been considered by the Health and Wellbeing Board and Kent County Council had written to central government regarding its concerns. Regarding this piece of work, there had been discussions with CAMHS service colleagues so that when this reformed provision moved forward Kent could be insure that there was a commitment from CAMHS for support when children were referred.
· A comment was made that this review was welcomed as a start to monitoring the work of CAMHS.
· In reply to a question, it was advised that there had been a lot of consultation with the Health Services on this review. This was a Tier 3 provision for children with complex needs and CAMHS support was necessary.
· In response to a question, Ms Dunn advised that this provision was the education of children with mental health needs. Schools needed to be clear about their role in supporting young people with mental health needs. This provision was for the top end, Tier 3 and 4. Discussions had also been held with GPs about having a clear process on the early work at Tiers 1 and 2 that can be carried out on early prevention and early intervention that would mean young people may not need to enter Tier 3 provision.
· Mr Gough advised that there had been improvements in assessment times and maintaining those improvements was a priority. The Health Overview and Scrutiny Cabinet Committee considered this issue; and it was also considered by the Health and Wellbeing Board with regards ... view the full minutes text for item 187