Who we are
Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) provide a range of programs in the local community to children, adolescents and their families who are seriously impacted by mental health and emotional wellbeing. The majority of services are delivered by community based teams, providing local treatment and care. Some services are delivered in hospital at inpatient settings.
We are a range of professionals with the skills needed to assess, treat and provide ongoing evaluation of children, teens and their families. Professionals employed by CAMHS include child psychiatrists, clinical and counselling psychologists, specialised social workers, psychotherapists, family therapists and specialist nurses. Teams work together and consult each other on a regular basis.
What we do
We provide support and specialist treatment, and work closely with infants, children, young people and their families who find it hard to cope with family life, school or the wider world. We offer assessment, education and treatment services for a range of mental difficulties such as:
- anxiety disorders
- attachment disorders
- autism spectrum disorders - specifically assist with assessment or mental health related symptoms, or both
- eating disorders
- major depression and mood disorders
- mental health concerns in pregnancy and following birth psychosis
- severe emotional trauma and adjustment problems
- suicide risk and self-harm.
How to access programs and services
Referrals can be made by a child or young person, their parents or caregivers, a GP, a health professional or the child’s or young person’s school.
Call the NSW Mental Health Line 1800 011 511 for advice, assessment and referral.
The Mental Health Line is a 24-hour telephone service operating 7 days a week across NSW. Trained, professional staff will assess your situation and decide the most appropriate service for referral.
See also support services contact list for children, teens and young adults.
Specialist programs for children, teens, young people and their families
Aboriginal Got It!
In the South Western Sydney Local Health District, the Aboriginal Got It! program helps prevent the development of severe behavioural problems, such as conduct disorder, in children aged 4 to 8. The program also aims to strengthen cultural practices in parenting. Aboriginal mental health workers work with parents, carers, children and the school system to deliver the social and emotional learning program.
Getting on Track in Time - Got It!
Getting on Track in Time – Got It! is an early intervention mental health program for children in Kindergarten to Year 2 and their parents and carers. The school-based program helps parents and schools to identify children’s social and emotional difficulties and supports them to respond to difficult behaviours.
Mental Health Intellectual Disability Hub at Sydney Children's Hospital Network
The Sydney Children's Hospital Network Mental Health and Intellectual Disability Hub is a statewide service for children and teens under age 18 with intellectual or autism spectrum disorders, or both, who also have mental health issues.
Mums and Kids Matter
The Mums and Kids Matter program helps mothers who are experiencing severe and complex mental illness and are current clients of public mental health services. The program offers short-term, non-acute residential mental health and parenting care, in-home or residential care accommodation support so that mums are able to care for their young child or children (0-5 years old) in the community. Wesley Mission delivers the Mums and Kids Matter program.
Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Services
The perinatal period includes the pregnancy and the early parenting period. Specialist Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Services provide coordinated care for the mother’s mental health needs, parenting capacity and parent-infant relationship, hospital in-reach as well as in-home support to women, their partners and families, reducing separation of mothers from their families wherever possible.
School-Link provides specialist mental health services through consultation liaison, clinical care planning and delivery of specialist mental health individual and group interventions in schools and TAFEs.
Whole Family Teams
Families with complex needs often risk falling through service gaps, often missing out on services due to access and support issues. The Whole Family Team helps to prevent vulnerable families from falling through service gaps, helping them with complex mental health and with problematic alcohol and other drug use that impact the safety of their children.
Youth Community Living Support Services (YCLSS)
The Youth Community Living Support Service (YCLSS) is a community mental health service for young people aged 16 to 24. The program provides case management and psychosocial support, working to promote recovery and positive change. YCLSS is an outreach service, which works with people in their own home or in the community. Wellways and Flourish Australia deliver the program in partnership with the NSW Ministry of Health.