The MindEd Universal Content programme is an evidence-based e-learning resource, providing educational advice and training to improve mental health outcomes for children and young people.
The programme aims to provide a single source of e-learning materials, including content that covers the breadth of children and young people’s mental health, for anyone who works with children or young people on a professional or amateur basis (including GPs, sports coaches, religious leaders, teachers, police and social workers).
The MindEd Universal Content ensures that all those who work with children and young people can learn some simple steps for mental health ‘first aid’ and know when to refer to more specialist help, to help speed up the detection and diagnosis of mental health issues.
MindEd Universal Content also includes a selection of sessions shared from the Healthy School Child Programme.
Counselling MindEd is a programme of e-learning modules to support the training and supervision of counselling work with children, young people and young adults.
The Counselling MindEd programme is targeted primarily at qualified counsellors who wish to develop their skills in working with children, young people and young adults; either as continuing professional development (CPD) or as part of an accredited training course. The modules are also appropriate for students on an initial counselling training who are interested in working with this client group, or for those on an initial training specifically in child, young person or young adult counselling.
The Counselling MindEd programme consists of 14 modules, each of which consists of one to five sessions of approximately 30 minutes in length.
The Counselling MindEd programme also provides a gateway into the wider MindEd e-portal, which covers all aspects of children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing.
Developed by a representative group of experts in school-aged health, the curriculum covers all essential aspects of school-aged health and signposts to the best websites, information and guidance on child health.
The e-learning material has been written by a team of experts in child and public health; representing the breadth of healthcare professionals that interact with school-aged children, including school nurses, GPs, neurologists, paediatrians and clinical psychologists.
The Targeted and Specialist CAMHS Entry Level curriculum is broken down into several sections, intended to be used by anyone starting to work in targeted and specialist CAMHS. It is also relevant to anyone working with children and young people who have mental health concerns in the NHS. Other professionals may well find some of the material useful.
Although this project is aimed at professional groups, it can be accessed by anyone interested in seeing this material. This e-learning material is designed to support other forms of learning and to provide information. It does not replace face-to-face training and does not aim to develop clinical competence.
The main sections cover:
Specialist CAMHS Entry Level: Aimed at anyone starting to work in child mental health. It introduces some of the major presentations seen in specialist and targeted CAMHS and describes the processes involved in specialist CAMHS assessments. More advanced users will also find topics of interest.
It has been developed to support induction and early training, as a refresher for more experienced CAMHS workers and to provide links to other material outside the site.
Core elements of the curriculum are assessment, diagnosis and formulation, presentation and management of the common disorders presenting to CAMHS, some more complex situations, the impacts of culture and chronic illness on these disorders and their management, children in care or who are adopted, commissioning for commissioners and clinicians involved in these issues and the impact of digital media on the children and young people we see.
The CYP IAPT Core Curriculum: For trainees enrolled in CYP IAPT programmes. It is also relevant to specialist and targeted CAMHS clinicians, counsellors, psychotherapists, and other professionals.
Specialist CAMHS Therapeutic Approaches: Aimed at those enrolled in CYP IAPT programmes in parent training or systemic family practice. It is also relevant to specialist and targeted CAMHS clinicians, counsellors, psychotherapists and other professionals.
Specialist CAMHS Leadership: Aimed at those enrolled in CYP IAPT programmes in leadership training. It is also relevant to specialist and targeted CAMHS clinicians, counsellors, psychotherapists and other professionals.
As part of the MindEd programme, the National Collaborating Centre for Mental Health (NCCMH) was commissioned to carry out the UK’s first ever comprehensive systematic review of e-mediated therapies and computer-based applications for the prevention and treatment of mental health problems and substance misuse in children and young people.
What are e-Therapies?
‘e-Therapies’ use technology to facilitate therapy. There are two main types:
e-Mediated therapies: traditional face-to-face therapy delivered via technologies such as video conference, email or chat-rooms. Technology is used to aid, but not replace, the input of a therapist.
Computer-based applications: used independently by the service user (without or with little contact with a therapist) via the internet, CD-ROM, mobile phone or tablet.
What did they do?
The NCCMH conducted a literature review following the protocol used for NICE clinical guidelines. This was to identify which e-therapies have been found to be effective for children and young people with a range of mental health problems including anxiety, depression, ADHD and eating disorders.
YoungMinds held two focus groups with young people aged 25 and under to ascertain their views on e-therapies. These groups tried several computer-based applications for anxiety and depression – two of the most common mental health conditions in this age group – and provided feedback on areas such as audience appeal, acceptability and perceived therapeutic benefit.
What did they find?
Evidence-based therapies for children and young people with mental health conditions can be delivered in computerised formats effectively and can be beneficial. However, as the field of e-therapies is relatively new, further research is needed to support this finding. The focus groups emphasised that e-Therapies should be part of a package of care and not a replacement for face-to-face therapies.
This is a new and very promising way of providing therapy for children and young people. For that reason we recommend that the government and other funding bodies invest in the development and evaluation of a range of e-therapies for children and young people with mental health conditions.