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Surveillance methodology has been widely used in paediatrics (British Paediatric Surveillance Unit, BPSU) and psychiatry (Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Surveillance System, CAPSS) to provide epidemiological data on conditions of interest. This study aimed to investigate the degree to which community paediatricians are involved in the care of children and young people (CYP) with mental health conditions, with implications for the surveillance of these conditions.

The authors concluded that community paediatricians are most involved in the care of children with neurodevelopmental disorders, and that joint BPSU and CAPSS surveillance would be recommended for these disorders. Whilst community paediatricians are also involved in the care of CYP with emotional difficulties, often due to limited access to CAMHS, it was felt that the decision for single or joint surveillance should be made after consideration of all relevant factors. The authors also highlighted the urgent need to expand CAMHS services in order to provide support for CYP with emotional difficulties, who are currently being managed by community paediatricians.

Involvement of community paediatricians in the care of children and young people with mental health difficulties in the UK: implications for case ascertainment by child and adolescent psychiatric, and paediatric surveillance systems

Ayyash HF, Ogundele MO, Lynn RM, et al. Involvement of community paediatricians in the care of children and young people with mental health difficulties in the UK: implications for case ascertainment by child and adolescent psychiatric, and paediatric surveillance systems. BMJ Paediatrics Open 2021;5:e000713. doi: 10.1136/bmjpo-2020-000713

Follow this link to read the full paper.

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