Over a quarter of children and young people referred to Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services in Scotland are waiting over 18 weeks for treatment, according to recent figures from Public Health Scotland.
This is well below the Scottish Government standard, which requires that 90% of children and young people should start treatment within 18 weeks of referral to CAMHS.
The figure is even worse in NHS Lothian, where 33% waited over 18 weeks to start treatment and 18.9% waited over a year.
“The lack of support shown by these figures is disgraceful,” said Caron Lindsay, Scottish Liberal Democrats candidate for Almond Valley. “A child who is struggling with their mental health needs help now, not in a year’s time.”
“The impact this will have on the wellbeing and education of these children is heart-breaking. If you have to wait a year to even be seen, by the time you’ve recovered, that’s a big proportion of your education,” she added.
“Scottish Liberal Democrats want to see more professionals being trained, more counsellors in schools and more walk-in services at A & E and crisis centres. Our Covid recovery has improving mental health at its heart,” she said. “This is why Scottish Liberal Democrats argued for and secured an extra £120 million for mental health services in this year’s Scottish budget.”