Non-urgent advice: How to make a referral

All referrals for a CAMHS service, are directed through CAMHS Single Point of Access (SPA). You can ‘self-refer’ to CAMHS using our online referrals form.

Referrals can be made online or through a telephone referral. Consent must be gained for a referral to take place.

Frequently asked questions

What’s the average wait time?

After the referral is passed to LAAC service, the referral will be actioned in 5 working days. A part one assessment will then be made which will usually be within one month of the referral to the LAAC service.

Who can refer?

A referral can be made by anyone, but we mainly have referrals from social care, the GP, foster carers or parents. Young people can also self-refer.

What information do you really need?

The referrals form guides the referral through the process for our service, but it is really helpful to have an idea of the primary problems and concerns which have led to the referral being made.

The background information, with a focus on the chronology (order) of events for the young person is very helpful for our understanding of potential needs. For Looked After Children an understanding of the legal status and the living arrangements is also very useful.

It is also important to identify in the referral what is important for the young person and what is going well, for example particular relationships, school or hobbies.

What is the criteria to access the LAAC service?

We are a service for children and young people up until the age of 19* with emotional and mental health needs who are in care. We can support young people and their carers both within Buckinghamshire and 1 hour of CAMHS bases. Our service focuses on supporting those who have attachment difficulties and/or an experience of trauma.

Any helpful tips and how to structure the referral?

To identify the problems exhibited and, if possible, identifying the ones that are having the greatest impact and then ordering the other difficulties after this.

The background information of the young person would be great in the first section which asks you to describe any mental health difficulties they might be having. A clear heading for this within the text would be fantastic!

What happens when referrals aren’t accepted?

If we feel that we are not the best placed to accept a referral, the referrer will be signposted to an appropriate service.

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Page last reviewed: 10 September, 2021