News story

Handheld tablet computers to help improve children's therapy sessions

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Norman Lamb, Minister for Care and Support, announced £2 million funding for new handheld computers to boost children’s mental health services.

Children and young people will be able to use tablet computers in their therapy sessions to give them and their therapist instant access to information that details how close they are to achieving treatment goals.

Norman Lamb said:

Acting early to help children with mental health problems can prevent a lifetime of suffering as half of those with lifelong mental health problems first experience symptoms before the age of 14.

This technology helps children and young people see how their treatment is progressing. Where treatment is not going as well as it could, practitioners can then change their approach to get the best results.

Children and young people have told us how much it helps them to see how their treatment is going and these new devices do just that.

The new devices will be rolled out to 42 sites across England.

Therapists can also use the handheld computers to record sessions so that their supervisors and clinical tutors can watch the sessions and comment on their techniques to help therapists to improve.

The time therapists and administrators currently spend recording outcomes will also be cut dramatically.

Earlier this year, the department published the Mandate with a clear objective to put mental health on a par with physical health and to extend and ensure more open access to the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies Programme in particular for children and young people and for those out of work.