"Mead Centre & CAMS in Armadale or anywhere."

About: Armadale CAMHS Armadale Hospital / Paediatric (Children's) Outpatient Clinic Mead Centre (Assessment Treatment Team)

(as a carer),

I have been seeking assistance for child who has ASD, and PTSD for many years.  

After many letters to ministers (who I felt refused to take any responsibility or answer my questions) I have not been able to find assistance when my child becomes violent in a meltdown and after a few hours I am exhausted and need help physically to make sure all are safe around my child.

I had to go to a police station the other day because my child was attacking me in the car and I couldn't drive, so asked the police to distract my child for a while so I could catch my breath.  I also asked for them to see if they could get any mental health assistance as I believe CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service) in Armadale is ignoring my case.  Nothing was done that day and I eventually calmed my child down and got home safely.

The next day I had the Armadale Mead staff turn up at my house for a welfare check.  I am gobsmacked that there is no mental health services for children, so the Mead Centre send staff to assess me.  I have never been so humiliated in my life and disgusted at the Government in their failure to offer proper services for children in need and in my opinion, to hide there failure by accusing a single parent and assessing her mental health state.

I open my arms to anyone that thinks they can be a better parent than I am to my child and their many needs and make the sacrifices I have, and to totally devote my whole life to my child as there is no one else that will meet their needs as I do.

I am asking for so little and in my opinion, the Armadale Mead Staff and CAMHS need to seriously check there own mental health status before they ever accuse or infer just because you cry when you see your own child suffering from mental anguish, that this is a mental health issue the mother needs to address. 

I am also disgusted that when I asked for a copy of what they are going to put on my file they told me I had to go through FOI (Freedom of information). You should not have to apply for FOI on information directly about yourself, and there are no policies or legislation saying that a person has to do this. I believe it is just a way of medical staff trying to put you off from seeing the poor and inaccurate notes put on medical files.

Responses

Response from Victor Cheng, Executive Director, Operations, Child and Adolescent Health Service nearly 2 years ago
Victor Cheng
Executive Director, Operations,
Child and Adolescent Health Service
Submitted on 21/09/2018 at 18:18
Published on Care Opinion on 24/09/2018 at 08:59


picture of Victor Cheng

Dear What Can I Say

Thank you for your comments. I am concerned to know you feel let down by the care you and your child have received, along with the potential gaps that may have occurred in our systems. This is not what the Child and Adolescent Health Service (CAHS) hope to achieve when providing vulnerable families with the support they require. We genuinely care about the concerns you have raised and in turn hope to address these more comprehensively with you in order to facilitate ongoing care and support to both yourself and your child.

Our normal processes include providing many options for families and I apologise if you have not already received these. Please let us offer you a range of choices you may wish to take if you haven’t already done so. I will provide the details of each service below:

If an urgent mental health assessment is required, either you or if necessary the police should take your child to the new Perth Children’s Hospital (or the nearest Emergency Department). Please contact 000 if your child, you or others are at immediate risk of harm. This is the most appropriate and safest choice for all concerned during a home crisis situation requiring police attendance. Please also find the phone number here for CAHS urgent mental health support line on 1800 048 636. This is a 24 hour service in collaboration with the Mental Health Emergency Response Line. Given your child has been diagnosed with Autism, you may wish to consider involving Autism Spectrum WA or Autism Association of WA, who may be able to provide yourself and your family with support and management strategies. These services offer many support choices: https://www.autismspectrum.org.au Through the Western Australia National Disability Insurance Scheme you may be able to receive funding to access the services your child needs: https://www.ndis.gov.au/families-carers.html Helping Minds offers support and services to families caring for someone with a mental health issue. The majority of these services are free of charge and focus on advocacy, understanding the mental health system, education, counselling and support, school holiday programs and respite: https://helpingminds.org.au/ Wanslea Family Services provides a range of supports to help children and families: https://www.wanslea.asn.au/

We would like to be able to follow up on your concerns further. Unfortunately, without knowing details about your child, such as their name and date of birth, we are not able to do this. We encourage you to contact the Child and Family Engagement Service (CaFES) on 6456 0032 or via CAHSFeedback@health.wa.gov.au so we can investigate this matter and ensure your concerns are addressed.

Kind regards

Dr Victor Cheng
Executive Director
Perth Children’s Hospital | Community Health | Mental Health

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Response from Diane Barr, Executive Director, Armadale Kalamunda Group nearly 2 years ago
Diane Barr
Executive Director,
Armadale Kalamunda Group
Submitted on 02/10/2018 at 11:19
Published on Care Opinion at 11:47


picture of Diane Barr

Dear What Can I Say

Thank you for taking the time to write to us. Caring for a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is exhausting and I acknowledge this must be an extremely tough time for you.

I am sorry to hear that your previous attempts to seek assistance, including from our health service, have not resulted in the help you are seeking. The Armadale Child and Adolescent Service – Mental Health (CAMHS) aims to actively support children experiencing mental health distress and their families. Referrals can be made to the Armadale CAMHS via a treating therapist, GP, school or other community organisation.

I would encourage you to continue seeking police assistance, should your child become violent, to protect your and their safety. For urgent situations you can also contact the Child and Adolescent Health Service (CAHS) urgent mental health support line on 1800 048 636.

All patients of public hospitals and other public health facilities have been able to request access to their medical records since the 1980s, thanks to Freedom of Information (FOI). Patients who have received contact with a Mental Health service also have an additional right to apply for access to their health records in accordance with the Mental Health Act 2014.

The need to formally apply for your personal records is designed to protect your information. Should you wish to access records for either yourself or your child, please contact our Consumer Liaison Officer on (08) 9391 1153 or via email at AKG_ConsumerLiaison@health.wa.gov.au who will be able to assist you with this.

Thank you again for taking the time to write and share your concerns with me.

Yours sincerely

Di Barr

Executive Director

Armadale Kalamunda Group

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