Suicidal teenagers let down by health system
Charities, doctors and relatives say that some teenagers are being let down by the health system because there is a lack of direction as to whether they should be treated as children or adults. This has the consequence that many receive no treatment at all. Suicide is known to be the most common cause of death among young men in Britain. Figures show that around 800 young people die of suicide every year, but approximately 19,000 youngsters make attempts on their life.People under the age of 16 are treated by the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) and over 18s are handled by the Adult Mental Health Service (AMHS).Sharon Allison, a medical injury lawyer for Ashtons Legal, says: “Individuals aged 16-17 don’t fit readily into either service. Often these individuals are particularly at risk and are incredibly vulnerable.””Specialist mental health services can prove to be a lifeline to those in crisis therefore it is very important to ensure that patients accessing, and GPs referring to, the service are clear as to what options are available for all.”
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