NHS Taskforce To Drive Improvements In Young People’s Hospital Mental Health, Learning Disability And Autism Care

NHS chief Simon Stevens has today (Thursday October 10th) announced that a new taskforce will be set up to improve current specialist children and young people’s inpatient mental health, autism and learning disability services in England.

Specialist taskforce delivery teams will be made up of doctors, nurses, psychologists, psychiatrists and other medical professionals. It will seek to: 

  • make a rapid set of improvements in care - over 18 months - but starting immediately
  • agree a set of recommendations for next steps.

Simon Stevens, NHS chief executive:

“This taskforce will place a spotlight on services and care for some of the most vulnerable young people in our society, bringing together families, leading clinicians, charities, and other public bodies to help make these services as effective, safe and supportive as possible for thousands of families.

The NHS chief also announced that Anne Longfield OBE, Children’s Commissioner for England, will chair an independent oversight board to scrutinise and support the work of the taskforce.

The Children’s Commissioner and her board will be given wide-ranging scope to track progress and propose rapid improvements in existing services, examine the best approach to complex issues such as inappropriate care, out of area placements, length of stays and oversee the development of genuine alternatives to care, closer to home.

Anne Longfield OBE, Children’s Commissioner:

“I am delighted to Chair this Independent Oversight Group to amplify the voice of these children and their families, scrutinise progress and hold the system to account.”