Mental Health Services and Special Educational Needs: Children

(asked on 16th February 2024) - View Source

Question to the Department of Health and Social Care:

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps she is taking to reduce the time taken for children to receive (a) SEN assessments and (b) mental health treatment.

Answered by
Maria Caulfield Portrait
Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
This question was answered on 21st February 2024

The Department of Health and Social Care is working closely with the Department for Education to ensure that children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) receive the right support, in the right place, at the right time. We are doing this through working together to implement the SEND and Alternative Provision Improvement Plan, which was published on 2 March 2023. This sets out the Government’s mission to establish a single national system that delivers for every child and young person with SEND and in alternative provision, so that they enjoy their childhood, achieve good outcomes, and are well prepared for adulthood and employment.

The Department of Health and Social Care is also investing at least an additional £2.3 billion a year in expanding National Health Service mental health services by March 2024, compared to 2018/19, and have set out our aim in the NHS Long Term Plan for an additional 345,000 children and young people to be able to get the mental health support they need. NHS England is also developing a new waiting time standard for children and their families to start receiving community-based mental health care within four weeks of referral.

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