This is an update from the Liaison Mental Health Team in CHI at Temple Street. We are based in St Francis Clinic beside ED. Our role is to provide support to young people who have a medical or physical problem and a mental health problem on an ongoing basis.
We hope you and your families are keeping well. We know that the current stress of COVID 19 is a challenge for all of us. While the physical impact on most young people is thankfully minimal, the impact on mental health is harder to predict. Being out of school, away from friends and without the usual distractions of life is really challenging – for children and adults alike!
We know that about 1/3 of young people with a chronic physical illness will need support from a liaison mental health service like ours. We also know that the current circumstances are likely to add additional stress on those children, young people and their families. Many families have also been cocooning for some time now and we are aware of the extra challenges this brings.
It is normal for everyone at home to experience feelings of worry and anxiety about what is happening in our world. Recognising that this is an uncertain and uneasy time is important for all of us. Don’t worry about managing perfectly – this is new territory for everyone. There are likely to be good days and bad days and that is ok.
We have attached below links to some general advice that may be helpful during this time as well as some helpful tips from Sarah and Sinead on our team
The College of Psychiatrists of Ireland regularly update their website with COVID 19 advice which can be found here https://www.irishpsychiatry.ie or alternatively you can follow them on Twitter at @irishpsychiatry
What do I do if my child already attends the Liaison Mental Health Team?
If you are already attending our service and have an appointment scheduled our administrative team have likely been in touch with you to cancel this face-to-face review. We are sorry if this has caused any extra worry or stress. We are doing our best to limit the spread of the virus.
We are currently working on new ways to follow up with our patients at this time – please bear with us. The team member you have been working with will likely have checked in with you and your child or will do so shortly. If you have any concerns please do not hesitate to call our clinic on 01 878 4293 and one of our team will get back in touch with you.
What do I do if my child attends a team in Temple Street for physical health needs and I have a concern about my child’s mental health?
If you attend a team here for physical health needs and you have concerns regarding your child’s mental health please discuss this with your team who can link in with us.
In case of emergency please contact your GP, out of hours GP or attend your local ED.
I have concerns about my child’s mental health but they do not regularly attend a team in Temple Street for physical health needs?
If you have concerns about your child’s mental health such as
- Lasting changes in their mood or behaviour
- Anxiety that impacts on their ability to function
- Worries about risk of harm to themselves or others
- Use of alcohol/ drugs to cope
Please contact your GP for further advice. Your GP may refer your child for further assessment to CAMHS – Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services. Our colleagues in CAMHS are open at this time and have provided some helpful tips and advice at the following link – CAMHS newsletter
If you are very concerned and feel like you cannot wait to see your GP or for an appointment in CAMHS, ED in Temple Street is open. Staff in ED and Psychiatry are available to assess your child’s needs with some additional precautions such as social distancing, masks and use of larger assessment rooms.
We hope this information is helpful and wish you and your family all the best during this challenging time.