Anne Longfield, the Children’s Commissioner for England, responding to the CQC annual report into the state of care, said:
“It is completely unacceptable that the number of children’s inpatient mental health services rated inadequate has more than doubled in the last year. Our research with children with learning disabilities and autism has shown that too many children are stuck in hospital when they don’t need to be there because of delays getting them the right support closer to home. When they are in hospital, they are too often subject to restraint or segregation, often because staff don’t have the right training to meet their needs. As chair of the oversight group scrutinising the work of an NHS taskforce which aims to turn this situation around, I will be working with children, the families and experts to hold the system to account.
“The children stuck in hospitals, and their families, need more than words – they need action now to improve their lives.”