Mental health network

Government announces transformation of children's mental health services

young woman

The Government has today set out its plans for an overhaul of mental health support for children in England.

New measures include:

  • £300 million funding for mental health support from 2019
  • Training for senior designated mental health leads in schools
  • Mental Health Support Teams, supervised by clinicians, working in and with schools
  • 4 week waiting times for NHS CAMHS services


The Mental Health Network welcomes the Government’s focus on children’s mental health and the commitment to implementing preventative measures.

Responding to the Green Paper on children’s mental health, Sean Duggan, chief executive of the Mental Health Network, and Niall Dickson, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, which represents organisations across the healthcare system, said:

"Not before time the government has turned its attention to the mental health of children and young people, and with extra money we may see results. But more needs to be done more quickly as these plans will only reach a minority of schools by 2022.

“And it is not just about money. New teams and roles to support children and young people are a step in the right direction but they need to be part of a wider, strategic workforce plan. Mental health services cannot recruit the staff they need now, and we must make sure we have the right staff with the right skills in the right places to carry out these new roles.

“We will watch the four-week waiting time pilot with interest - it has to be right that children and families can access the care and support they need ,but it will be an empty promise if local services providers do not have the resources to deliver this target.

“Treatments should be evidence based and so we welcome the commissioning of further research into what works in child and adolescent mental health services.

“We do know there is already excellent work taking pace - Mental Health Network members Place2Be have been providing outstanding emotional support to children in schools for more than 20 years.”

Find out more

Members are encouraged to seek further information on ‘Transforming children and young people’s mental health provision: a green paper' and to contribute to the Government’s open consultation. If you would like to discuss any aspect of the plans, please do get in touch at

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