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Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS)

Bedfordshire CAMHS (North & South): Self Referrals

From April 2020, young people or parents/carers who live in Bedfordcan  self-refer to the CAMHS service. Please complete this form which should be emailed to The team will screen all referrals for risk and need. 

Mental Health Crisis

In the event of an emergency, young people can access an All-Age Crisis helpline available 24 hours per day.

ELFT Bedfordshire All Age Crisis Team: Tel 01234 315691

In the light of the current COVID-19 pandemic, North Bedfordshire CAMHS is enacting our business continuity plan to maintain a comprehensive mental health service for children, young people (CYP) and their families. Our focus is to continue to provide essential and critical services, and we have temporarily suspended therapeutic intervention for non-urgent cases.  

An Integrated Critical Response Team (ICRT) has been developed in order to prioritise urgent and emergency (RED) cases. The team will operate via a rota system covering new extended hours:

Monday – Friday                                 09:00-21:00

Weekends / Bank Holidays                  10:00-20:00

The team comprises experienced CAMHS clinicians, supported by a Clinical Team Lead and Consultant Psychiatrist.

Assessments and Interventions during this period will primarily be delivered via Telephone, and where possible Video links, in line with local information governance standards. If considered essential and safe, face-to-face appointments will be offered in the clinic or at home, supported by the use of appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

For young people already open to the service, support can be accessed by contacting the existing CAMHS crisis team number for advice and consultation over the phone. If it is considered that a face-to-face assessment is required, this will be arranged according to need and risk in a designated protected area.

For any cases considered urgent, (i.e need to be contacted within 48 hours) whether open to the service or not, GP’s or other professionals can refer into the ICRT, via the ELFT Bedfordshire (All Age) Crisis Team in the first instance. Calls will be diverted to CAMHS Crisis Team during hours above or triaged directly.

New CAMHS Referrals / Open CAMHS Cases

The Front Door Team will continue to review new referrals based on risk and complexity.

We are currently ensuring that every young person under our care is RAG-rated (Red, Amber, Green) based on risk and mental health need, with associated plans to ensure young people are managed in a safe way through the crisis. All new referrals received into the service will receive a telephone triage assessment.  

The level of therapeutic input provided during this period will depend upon the severity, complexity and risk of presentation, with the more serious cases receiving regular monitoring and support.

During this period, we will consider all self-referrals  to the service, which can be made via the  website of CHUMS,  our Tier 2 Emotional Wellbeing partners.  All referrals , will receive a telephone triage to assess risk and need.  If appropriate for CHUMS, the young person will be accepted and receive an acceptance letter. If not appropriate, psychoeducation and self-help advice over the telephone will be provided, together with a follow-up letter.

If there is an escalation in concern with any cases, young people and their families can contact our usual clinic telephone number: 01234 893300/1 between the normal working office hours Monday – Friday 09:00-17:00. If the allocated clinician is unavailable, calls will be escalated to either the Clinician of the Day or Clinical Team Lead. 

Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) provides outpatient assessments, support and treatment for children and young people up to the age of 18 experiencing moderate to severe mental health problems. The service works to provide them with a greater knowledge of their condition and improve coping techniques.  

We provide help to children and to the wider family, including those with living with foster parents, adopted children and young people living in children’s homes. The service may see children and adolescents on their own, with their parents or with their family, and may also see parents on their own.

Children, adolescents and their families referred to the service may be experiencing different kinds of problems. These may include:

  • Eating difficulties
  • Emotional feelings such as those of unhappiness, loneliness
  • Fears and anxieties
  • Parents having problems managing their children or feeling that their own difficulties are affecting their children
  • Relationship problems
  • Traumatic experiences

The service is also available to help children, adolescents and their families with mental health issues related to physical or learning disabilities.

The service consists of a multi-disciplinary team which offers a range of expertise including:

  • Art Psychotherapists
  • Child & Adolescent Psychiatrists
  • Clinical Psychologists
  • Nurse Specialists
  • Psychotherapists
  • Social Workers
  • Other Child & Adolescent Clinic

Who to contact


Where to go

Child & Adolescent Mental Health Services,
9, Rush Court
MK40 3JT
Get directions

Time / Date Details

When is it on
9am-5pm Monday to Friday
Time of day

Other Details


Referral required
Age Bands
11-14 years old
Parents and carers
15-17 years old
5-10 years old
SEN Provision Type