Scots children put in wards for adults

Children and young people in Scotland with mental health problems are routinely receiving treatment in adult facilities even though guidance states this should happen only in exceptional circumstances.

Figures from the Mental Welfare Commission show that 36 children under 17 were admitted to non-specialist services in the first quarter of 2006, and 31 of them were treated in adult mental health wards. A quarter of the children were under 16.

Guidance from the Mental Welfare Commission says 16- and 17-year-olds should only be admitted to adult wards on “rare occasions” – such as when specialist facilities are lacking in the area. It is to look into the issue in greater detail later in the year.

The figures mark the first time the commission has included child admissions in its quarterly updates monitoring how services are complying with the Mental Health (Care and Treatment) (Scotland) Act 2003.

More from Community Care

Comments are closed.