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Waiting lists for child mental health services up for second month in Wales

13 Sep 2023 2 minute read
Waiting lists for mental health support for children have risen.

Emily Price

The number of children waiting more than 4 weeks for a first appointment with mental health services in Wales has risen for the second consecutive month.

Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) waiting lists rose to 14% in July 2023 – the highest since December 2022.

In three health boards, Betsi Cadwaladr, Cwm Taf, and Aneurin Bevan, more than 30% of children were waiting for a first appointment significantly above the national figure for July.

Welsh Liberal Democrat leader, Jane Dodds has called for the Welsh government to keep a “laser-eye focus” on CAMHS waiting times.


Ms Dodds said: “Children and young people routinely tell us how difficult it is to access mental health services and the strain waiting for support puts on them and their loved ones.

“We’re now seeing figures begin to rise again, and it is crucial that we do not leave young people languishing on waiting lists waiting for mental health support.

“Welsh Government must keep a laser-eye focus on waiting times so we don’t see a return to long waiting lists for some of our most vulnerable young people.”

A Welsh Government spokesperson said: “The waiting time target for specialist CAMHS continues to be achieved at a national level, but some health boards have seen fluctuations in performance.

“All health boards have CAMHS recovery plans in place with the aim of achieving the waiting time target on a sustainable basis, and the NHS Executive monitors progress against these plans on a monthly basis.”

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