Camden child and young person mental health service (Open Minded)

We support the emotional health and wellbeing of children, young people and their families in Camden.

Mental health problems are very common, with about 13% of infants, children and young people in Camden suffering from mental health difficulties at any one time. Help is easy to access as Camden Council and the local Health CCG have commissioned a wide range of mental health services for children and young people in the Borough, under the name “Open Minded”.

The Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust deliver most of these services and also help connect children and young people with other mental health services if needed; for example to the Royal Free Hospital ADHD service, Brandon Centre Counselling Service, or Camden MOSAIC, a service for children and young people with disabilities.

Who we see

We see infants, children and young people up to the age of 18 who need help with a range of difficulties including:

  • Anxiety Problems
  • Fears and phobias
  • Relationship difficulties
  • Difficulties adjusting to new situations
  • Low mood, particularly depression, self-harm and suicidal feelings
  • Mood swings
  • Aggressive behaviour
  • Hyperactivity
  • Eating Problems
  • Severe mental health problems including psychosis

Assessment and treatment

We work with you and your family to assess your needs, and we help you to make shared decisions about the type of help or support that we, or other local services, might be able to provide. This could be to give advice to family members or advice to other professionals working with families, or it could mean providing various types of therapeutic help to bring about improvements. We work closely with families and other professionals to help keep infants, children and young people safe.

The average length of time getting help is approximately 6 months with about 6 – 12 appointments during that time, but if more help is needed this can be provided.

To understand whether the help we provide is making a difference, we work with you to complete a range of outcome measures. This also enables us to consider other options in a timely way if the help or support is not useful.

Overview of the Camden Child and Young Person Mental Health Service

We have two community teams, one based at the Tavistock Clinic in North Camden and the other at Ampthill Square in South Camden. These teams are staffed by psychologists, family therapist, child psychotherapists, nurses, social workers and child and adolescent psychiatrists. Each team can provide help for all sorts of mental health difficulties – see the list above – and to all sections of the community including refugee families.

The two community teams provide mental health support to primary and secondary schools in Camden through meeting with children and their families and school staff and liaising with other agencies and professionals. We also provide staff training and consultation.

This service has been expanded recently to include a trailblazer project with 10 new members of staff trained to provide help and support for children young people and their parents and carers for early symptoms of depression and anxiety. A range of other support initiatives have been developed.

We support young people in foster care as well as unaccompanied refugee children in a small mental health team based at the Crowndale Centre in Camden, working alongside social workers, foster carers and other staff groups.

We support the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people who are using Camden Council Services such as Social Services, Early Help, Children’s Centres, Youth Offending Services and special schools including Swiss Cottage, CCfL and Robson House. The team that do this work is called the Whole Family Service and is based at 5 Pancras Square, the Camden Council main building.

The Camden Adolescent Intensive Support Team (CAISS) work with young people with the most serious mental health difficulties, working to reduce mental health crisis to try and avoid the need for young people to have to receive mental health care in inpatient settings.

An important principle is that all these teams work together so that children and young people do not need to be referred from one part of the service to another.

We work in schools, GP practices, health centres across Camden and the Tavistock Centre, where it’s convenient for young people and families to meet us.

Children, young people (up to 18 years), their families, parents and carers who are experiencing emotional, behavioural and mental health problems.

We accept self-referrals.

We also accept referrals from GPs and other professionals such as health visitors and school nurses.

Please phone us to find out more on 020 8938 2241.

Electronic Referral Service

Please be aware that GPs who can refer directly to Tavistock & Portman services are now able to refer to a Referral Assessment Service (RAS) via the Electronic Referral Service.

To locate the service on eRS, enter the following in the search fields:

Service name: Children, Young Adults and Family – Tavistock & Portman NHSFT

Priority: Routine

Speciality: Mental Health – Child and Adolescent

Clinic Type: Not Otherwise Specified

Organisation of Site Name field: Tavistock and Portman

Download the 'children, young adults and families' referral form

020 8938 2241

Please note that this email is only for professionals and patients who are making referral enquiries and referrals for CAMHS and our Adolescent and young adult service.

Tavistock Centre, 120 Belsize Lane, London NW3 5BA