The purpose of this paper is to describe mental health-related contact with educational professionals amongst children in the British Child and Adolescent Mental Health Survey (BCAMHS) 2004.
BCAMHS 2004 was a community-based survey of 5,325 children aged 5-16, with follow-up in 2007. This paper reports the percentage of children with a psychiatric disorder that had mental health-related contact with education professionals (categorised as teachers or specialist education services) and the percentage with specific types of psychiatric disorders amongst those contacting services.
Two-thirds (66.1 per cent, 95 per cent CI: 62.4-69.8 per cent) of children with a psychiatric disorder had contact with a teacher regarding their mental health and 31.1 per cent (95 per cent CI: 27.5-34.7 per cent) had contact with special education either in 2004 or 2007, or both. Over half of children reporting special education contact (55.1 per cent, 95 per cent CI: 50.0-60.2 per cent) and almost a third reporting teacher contact in relation to mental health (32.1 per cent, 95 per cent CI: 29.7-34.6 per cent) met criteria for a psychiatric disorder.
Many children in contact with education professionals regarding mental health experienced clinical levels of difficulty. Training is needed to ensure that contact leads to prompt intervention and referral if necessary.
This is the first paper to report on mental health-related service contact with education professionals in the 2004 BCAMHS survey along with its 2007 follow-up. It identifies high levels of teacher contact which represent challenges in supporting staff with training, resources and access to mental health services.
Darren Moore, Ken Stein and Obioha C. Ukoumunne are funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care (CLAHRC) for the South West Peninsula at Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust. The views expressed in this publication are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the NIHR. Tamsin Newlove-Delgado is funded by a Doctoral Research Fellowship from the National Institute for Health Research. This report is independent research and the views expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the NHS, the National Institute for Health Research or the Department of Health.
Newlove-Delgado, T., Moore, D., Ukoumunne, O.C., Stein, K. and Ford, T. (2015), "Mental health related contact with education professionals in the British Child and Adolescent Mental Health Survey 2004", The Journal of Mental Health Training, Education and Practice, Vol. 10 No. 3, pp. 159-169. https://doi.org/10.1108/JMHTEP-02-2015-0007
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