Mental Health Support Team

The Oxfordshire Mental Health Support Team (MHST) is part of a national project aimed at supporting the early intervention of emerging mental health concerns and issues.

What is the need

One in ten children between the ages of 5 and 16, or three children in every classroom, have a diagnosable mental health problem.

It is estimated that half of all mental health problems manifest before the age of 14 years, with 25% enduring mental health conditions being present by the age of 24 years.

The most recent survey published by NHS Digital in 2018 found that 12.5% of 5 to 19 year olds had at least one mental disorder when assessed (2017), and 5% met the criteria for 2 or more mental disorders.

One in 12 (8.1%) 5 to 19-year olds had an emotional disorder like anxiety or depression.

The role of schools

Children and young people spend most of their time in education. Therefore school staff are well suited to support the early identification of mild to moderate mental health and emotional wellbeing difficulties.

Ensuring children and young people have the right support at the right time can have a significant impact on physical and mental health.


The national Trailblazer Mental Health Support Team Programme, funded by NHS England is an exciting new service aiming to develop and deliver a collaborative, system-wide approach to support the mental health of children in the school setting.

Mental Health Support Teams (MHST) complement existing support provided in schools by providing a realm of expertise and resources to deliver quicker support to individuals who may not typically meet the CAMHS thresholds, but would benefit from accessing early support.

Non-urgent advice: Get in touch

Please see our referrals page for info on how to access this service.  If you would like more information, please contact:

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Page last reviewed: 7 September, 2021