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Getting Advice

Single Point of Access (SPA)

The role of the Single Point of Access (SPA) team is to triage requests for advice/support that come into Doncaster Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service where there are concerns that a child / young person may be experiencing the following mental health difficulties:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression/ Low mood
  • Psychosis
  • Obsessive- Compulsive Disorder
  • Eating Disorders
  • Self-harm / Suicidal thoughts
  • Intellectual Disabilities (with mental health presentation)

Practitioners in the Single Point of Access Team will consider how long a child or young person has struggled with their difficulties, the impact this is having on their day-to-day life, the frequency of their difficulty and whether universal services have been accessed prior to a request for support being made. They will also consider the context of the difficulty and whether the young person is experiencing a ‘normal’ reaction to a significant life event.

All requests for support are triaged for urgency by the Single Point of Access team within 24 hours.

How to request advice and support…

From Young People-

  • Telephone call (parental consent needed if under 14). Please contact the team on (01302) 796191. If our Practitioners in the Single Point of Access Team are busy dealing with another request for support, our friendly admin team will ask you for some information about you so that a member of the SPA team can call you back. We will try to contact you on the same day.
  • E-Clinic – You can book an appointment to chat to us online by downloading the app.
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From Parents
  • Telephone call – Please contact the team on (01302) 796191 so that we can put you through to a member of the Single Point of Access team to discuss your queries or concerns. If your child is already open to Doncaster CAMHS, we would encourage you to contact your allocated Practitioner for support in the first instance.
  • Written requests for support should be made via the online referral form which can be accessed via the following link;Online referral
From Professionals
  • Professionals are welcome to contact the Single Point of Access team on (01302) 796191 for consultation and advice.
  • Written requests for support should be made via the online referral form which can be accessed via the following link; Online referral
  • If you are a GP or member of a local School and wish to arrange a consultation, please contact your Locality CAMHS Practitioner.
What happens next?

Initially, the Single Point of Access team will attempt to contact the child’s parent(s) and/ or speak to the young person directly to find out some more information about the current difficulties and what support has already been tried. Following this, and with permission, we may contact other important people in the child/young person’s life. This will help us to think through with you the best steps forward. This may include us providing resources/self-help or signposting to other avenues of support.

For some children/young people it will be identified that specialist support is required.  At this stage, all requests for support are taken to a weekly allocations meeting where each referral is discussed by a multi-disciplinary team within CAMHS. We work together to decide which part of the service is best placed to support the child/ young person and their family. Once we have decided on the appropriate course of action, the relevant pathway (Getting Advice/ Getting Help/ Psychological Therapies/ ICST) will make contact with the family to arrange a consultation or an appointment.

Each locality in Doncaster has an identified member of the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) team who works directly with schools and GPs in the area to provide early intervention support and a link into the CAMHS service.

The locality worker will:
  • Offer regular consultation slots that you can book into to discuss cases as well as receive advice and guidance on the management of cases, support for interventions, co-working and liaison. This could be in the form of one of one-to-one support and guidance or longer term supervision in managing cases.
  • Have the ability to offer brief interventions directly with the child or young person, to offer short term one-to-one support with their mental health and mental wellbeing. This may take the form of a discreet piece of work which would mean the child or young person does not have to enter services unnecessarily. It could also provide an environment to offer a period of extended assessment of the child or young person to better identify their current care needs and ensure most appropriate referrals are made in the timeliest manner.
  • Offer support to identify the most appropriate person within the child or young person’s network to lead their case and to ensure that care co-ordination is not lost through service transitions.
  • Provide partnership working with the child or young person’s network to discuss and support their needs, including with key workers, schools, colleges, early help teams, social care teams, GPs and other practitioners who work with young people.
  • Work with you to step up and step down cases through CAMHS. This is to ensure children and young people are better supported, don’t enter unnecessary services and receive the most appropriate support on discharge from the core CAMHS service.
  • Carry out joint visiting and assessments where clinically appropriate to make sure families don’t experience excessive appointments.
  • Deliver training, education and a greater awareness of children’s mental health services, mental health issues and mental wellbeing.