Mental Health Services run by NHS Lothian for children and young people are moving to a new purpose built home today at Little France.

The NHS Lothian’s Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) moves home to the new Royal Hospital for Children and Young People at the Bio Quarter next to the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh.

All of the services which CAMHS offers are included.

This area of the health service helps children and young people who may have emotional, behavioural or mental health problems. These manifest as depression, problems with food, self-harm and anxiety. This is a milestone for the new hospital as some areas of the health service already moved into the new Sick Kids in July last year. But families are reminded that at present, the Children’s Emergency Department continues to be located at the Royal Hospital for Sick Children at Sciennes.

The lounge area at CAMHS

Dr Ereni Skouta, Clinical Director of CAMHS, NHS Lothian said, “The move to the new Royal Hospital for Children and Young People is long anticipated and incredibly exciting. It will provide a new home to our adolescent inpatient unit and the services that provide intensive support to children and young people across Lothian who are experiencing mental health problems. Having a dedicated and bespoke space for this service is so important and plays a key role in supporting both patient treatment and care. 

“For our patients and their families, as well as our staff the new facilities will make an enormous difference. Physical and mental health are intrinsically linked and this move demonstrates NHS Lothian’s commitment to ensuring parity between the two. 

“The whole CAMHS team are delighted to join many of their Children’s Services colleagues at the new Royal Hospital for Children and Young People and look forward to welcoming the first patients.”

The new CAMHS facilities have been designed in collaboration with children and young people and include a range of special features for exclusive use by CAMHS patients. This includes a bespoke outdoor garden area and a huge range of sensory equipment, both designed to complement and support patient care. 

In addition, patients and their families will be able to access the full range of facilities within the building which include catering outlets and a shop. 

Games Room

Professor Alex McMahon, Executive Director for Nursing, Midwifery and Allied Healthcare Professionals, Executive Lead for Prisons Healthcare and REAS, NHS Lothian said, “The facilities within the new Royal Hospital for Children and Young People are simply fantastic and the CAMHS facilities are no exception. The spaces have been designed with real thought to ensure that they can not only facilitate first-class patient care, but will help to put our patients and their families at ease.”

Susan Goldsmith NHS Lothian Director of Finance and Executive Lead on the Re-provision Project described this milestone as an important next step within the Royal Hospital for Children and Young People project. Ms Goldsmith said, “I am delighted that the Royal Hospital for Children and Young People welcomes another specialist service, as CAMHS moves into their purpose built new home.

“I have stressed before just how exceptional the facilities at the new hospital are, and I don’t think this should be underplayed, they really are incredible and will make such a positive difference for children and young people across Lothian. 

“As always, I would like to express my thanks to all of the teams and individuals who have been involved in supporting with the CAMHS move. It is through your hard work and commitment that this move can go ahead smoothly and with minimal disruption for both patients and staff.

“I wish the whole team well as they unpack and settle in to their new environment.” 

Presently a number of Children’s Outpatient services, as well as the Department of Clinical Neurosciences are situated at the Royal Hospital for Children and Young People site. The remaining services, presently located within the Royal Hospital for Sick Children at Sciennes will relocate to the new Royal Hospital for Children and Young People once the final remedial and enhancement work is complete and the commissioning stage is finalised. During the commissioning stage equipment will be installed and tested, and staff orientation will take place.