Parents Say mental health toolkit launches at CNO summit

A toolkit which helps healthcare professionals to involve parents and carers in children and young people's mental health services will be launched at the chief nursing officer (CNO) for England’s summit in Birmingham today (December 2). 

NHS England director of mental health Karen Turner will launch the Parents Say toolkit, which has been developed with charity YoungMinds and follows consultation with 900 parents, at the summit.

The online resource includes five short films, modules, and case studies. Healthcare professionals can take a survey to assess the degree of parental participation in their mental health service, before working through modules on subjects including access, communications and workforce development. 

The communications modules advise professionals on how to update parents with information about the service, while the workforce development modules detail how parents can be involved in staff appraisals, training and recruitment. 

YoungMinds CEO Sarah Brennan said parents and carers often tell the charity that they want more involvement when their child uses mental health services: ‘Parents are experts by experience in supporting young people, yet our research showed us that the majority of parents and carers feel excluded and isolated from the treatment process, and often blame themselves for their child’s mental health problems.’

She added that the toolkit offers ‘a wealth of practical resources and suggestions for services and parents alike and we are proud to have been a key part of its creation’. 

In a keynote speech at the summit in Birmingham today, Ms Turner will also outline changes to children and young people’s mental health services. 

She will tell the summit about how clinical commissioning groups have submitted local transformation plans to show how children and young people’s mental health services will improve. They are due to be published this month.

Ms Turner will say that ‘additional funding, close partnership working and excellent joined-up local planning mean we now have the momentum to deliver the real change we need’. 

NHS England said that an extra £1.4 billion has been pledged over the next five years to children’s and young people’s mental health services. 

Access the Patients Say toolkit here

Keep visiting RCNi for more updates from the summit.