Integrated Care

Body and Mind are Inseparable.
Nearly three quarters of children with a mental health condition also have a physical health condition or developmental problem.
Paediatric Liaison practice co-locates support for physical and mental health to prevent young people being caught between systems. We need to develop a shared language and culture that recognises parity of esteem and invests in psychological interventions in the acute health setting.

The Paediatric Mental Health Association (PMHA) is a multidisciplinary group of professionals including Paediatricians, Child and Adolescent Psychiatrists, Clinical Psychologists, Nurses, Physiotherapists and Occupational Therapists, who are concerned in promoting mental wellbeing alongside physical health of babies, children and young people into adulthood.

Our mission is to champion the integration and working together of services, by influencing clinical practice in Paediatrics, Policy Development, Education and Training and Continuing Professional Development (CPD).

The Thinking Together project is an educational venture between RCPsych and RCPCH.
The simple principle is to link trainees from Paediatrics and Child Psychiatry in a “buddy” system and promote joined up working by encouraging each pair to visit one another’s clinics and share good practice. We established this pilot in London and the practice has spread organically across the country.

“Being more mindful when your mind is full”.
I wrote this piece for the Royal College of Paediatrics (Milestones, Spring 2021), alongside Dr Karen Street, lead for mental health at RCPCH. In it, we advocate for better mental health support on paediatric wards, and the importance of joint working. You can download the full article here:

There is a national drive towards better integrated services, although few geographical areas have achieved this to date. In Devon, where I work, there is an aspiration for a fully “Integrated Psychological Medicine Service”