27 February 2020

A strong sense of purpose was in the air at the North Central East London (NCEL) CAMHS Collaborative Launch Event held in Euston’s UNISON building on Thursday 20 February.

By working together in the NCEL CAMHS Collaborative, NHS staff and service users seek to eradicate disparities in the quality of mental health care for young people across the region.

The day brought together Experts by Experience, NHS Trust Chief Executive Officers, CAMHS clinicians and a variety of stakeholders from across the whole region.

All united to plan the next steps required to make the Collaborative vision a reality.

Headed up by the East London NHS Foundation Trust (ELFT) the partnership includes Barnet, Enfield & Haringey Mental Health NHS Trust (BEH), North East London NHS Foundation Trust (NELFT) The Tavistock & Portman NHS Trust and The Whittington Health NHS Trust. 

Experts by Experience opened the Activity sessions – young people and parents who have first-hand knowledge of how CAMHS has worked to support them up until now – and Chief Executive Officers for each of the health trusts. 

Each session focused on a variety of themes including: How to improve access to CAMHS community teams and Eating Disorder services, working with Acute services, how to reduce out of area placements so as to keep young people close to their families and social networks when needing CAMHS in-patient care. 

Opening the day’s proceedings, ELFT CEO Dr Navina Evans said: 

“Service user co-production is at the heart of everything we do at ELFT. By working closely with our colleagues from our partner trusts we can pool a vast range of talent and apply the ELFT methodology that we know works to raise the quality of care.

"We all want to ensure that mental health care is effective, safe and can provide for as positive an experience as possible for our young people and their families.

“This is an exciting moment and an important landmark in improving the quality of care across the region.”

Expert by Experience Anne Henderson said: 

“I have met the most inspirational and dedicated professionals over the time that my daughter needed support whilst experiencing a mental health crisis, but there are also aspects of the system that still need to change. 

“I’m excited at the prospect of what can now happen because of this Collaborative: CAMHS professionals coproducing services alongside the people that use them.”

Reflecting on the event, ELFT’s Executive Director of Commercial Development Dr Mohit Vekataram said:

“The day’s event was a success. But the hard work now really begins – making sure we can deliver improvements in care for young people across the whole region.”