The average wait for the child mental health services is seven months.
Just let that sink in for a second.
That figure was revealed by DHSC Minister Lawrie Hooper this week in response to a question from Arbory, Castletown and Malew MHK Tim Glover.
Mr Hooper said: ‘The Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) average waiting time is 217 days. For the community mental health service it’s two weeks, community wellbeing service is two weeks, the older person’s mental health service is three weeks, they are the average waiting time for those services.’
In response to this shocking figure, Mr Glover asked the Minister if he believes that over 200 days is an acceptable waiting time and asked for further clarity whether this figure was for treatment or merely assessment.
Mr Hooper said the average waiting time for CAMHS is ‘completely unacceptable’. He added: ‘I would flag that any referrals that present with a high risk of harm will be referred immediately and dealt with straight away as part of the Crisis Response so, people who are in crisis mode would get that immediate referral.’
The Minister also thanked Mr Glover for raising the issue and said he was asking Manx Care what it would do to improve the waiting times.
In response to a separate question from Mr Glover, the Minister said in 2019 4,148 people sought help from mental health services, 2020 it was 4,469 and in 2021 it was 4,539.