By Fiona Gale and Clay Frake.
Jessica Kingsley Publishers
ISBN 1 85302 929 7
At a time when it is increasingly clear that children’s mental
health needs cannot be wholly met by scarce highly specialised
professionals, it is helpful to have this clear and uncomplicated
handbook to support front-line workers.
The authors have brought together basic child development, a
discussion of risk factors, frameworks for assessment and treatment
and management strategies.
Interspersed throughout the text are case studies and exercises,
which can be used by individual readers as they go along, or
formally with a group.
The book is full of common sense and does not promise unrealistic
However, it shows that much can be done at the primary care level
if a thorough assessment is carried out and clear plans for an
appropriate therapy agreed and recorded. Treatments must be
reviewed and adapted as necessary; nothing must be allowed to
The handbook underlines the importance of the role of the primary
mental health worker, both as a case worker and in consultation
with others working with children, complementing the more
traditional child mental health professions.
Dinah Morley is deputy director, YoungMinds.