5,218 mental health referrals from A&E

There were 23,256 unscheduled adult mental health referrals in the Western Trust over the past five years, with 5,218 in total from local A&E departments, it’s emerged.

New figures released by the Department of Health have laid bare the huge demand for mental health services for children, teenagers and adults across the north west.

Over 60,000 mental health referrals - involving both adult and child patients - were made in the Western Trust over the five year period, Health Minister Robin Swann has revealed.

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Altnagelvin hospital.

During the same five year timeframe, there were 9,585 child and adolescent mental health scheduled (CAMHS) care referrals across the Western Trust district.

The total number of scheduled referrals, for both adult and child patients, accepted locally was 61,260.

Figures for unscheduled child and adolescent mental health referrals from A&E departments in the Western Trust were only available for the years 2017/18 and 2018/19.

There were 146 referrals of children and adolescents from emergency departments over those two years.

Mr. Swann said the Western Trust have been unable to provide the CAMHS breakdowns since 2018/19 due to system issues.

The staggering referral figures were taken from the Western Trust’s monthly non-inpatient mental health returns.

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