Lime Trees inpatient team

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The staff at Lime Trees includes: nurses; occupational therapists; clinical psychologists; consultant psychiatrists; junior doctors; a social worker; family therapists and teachers. Lime Trees also helps to train new staff, and we offer placements to trainees from each of these professions.

The service manager for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) oversees the running of both the community and inpatient services. The service manager attends the MDT meetings on a monthly basis and works closely with the inpatient unit manager to promote nursing development. Any concerns or complaints that are not resolved within the inpatient unit are directed to the service manager.

Nursing staff

Nursing staff provide 24 hour therapeutic and physical care to the young people at Lime Trees. The nursing team includes nurses with qualifications in mental health and child health, and health care assistants with experience in young people’s mental health services.

Key worker & co-workers

When a young person is admitted to Lime Trees he/she will be allocated a key worker and co-workers. These people are members of the nursing staff, and will coordinate the young person’s care whilst at Lime Trees. The key worker will usually have been chosen because they have the skills relevant to the problems the young person is experiencing. They will talk to the young person’s family/carers and the wider clinical team so that we can decide how best to support and help.

Occupational therapy

Occupational therapy is concerned with activities of daily living, leisure, education, work and the balance between each of them. The occupational therapist at Lime Trees will assess the impact of the person’s difficulties in these areas and devise a programme to help address them. This may involve looking at ways of increasing confidence and self-esteem, managing anxiety and improving social skills so that the young person can engage more confidently in their chosen activities.

Clinical psychology

Clinical psychologists aim to reduce psychological distress and to enhance and promote psychological well-being. A wide range of psychological difficulties may be addressed including anxiety, depression, relationship problems, learning difficulties, child and family problems, and serious mental illnesses.

To assess a young person’s difficulties, the clinical psychologist may undertake an assessment using a variety of methods including psychometric tests, interviews and direct observation of behaviour. The clinical psychologist will often work directly with the young people and their families, individually or in groups, assessing their needs and providing therapies/advice based on psychological theories and research.


There are two consultant child and adolescent psychiatrists attached to the inpatient unit. Both work on the inpatient unit and with the CAMHS community teams. On the unit they are responsible for the medical care of the young people and work closely with colleagues from other mental health disciplines. Their role includes assessment of any mental illness or psychiatric diagnosis, and they are able to prescribe medication if required.

There's also a speciality trainee, who is a doctor in senior psychiatric training, and a more junior doctor. Both doctors have more day-to-day responsibilities on the unit such as regular patient reviews and doing any physical health checks such as physical examinations and blood tests.

Social worker

A social worker attends the MDT meetings and is a member of the family therapy team. They also attend some forward planning meetings, notably when a young person is subject to a court order or the Mental Health Act. The social worker is likely to be consulted should ethical or legal issue arise, such as the requirement to safeguard the welfare of young people.

Family therapy

When a young person has had some time to settle into the unit, the family therapy team will invite all family members/carers to meet with them regularly. This is because:

  • The team gain a fuller understanding of the young person's difficulties through hearing the family member’s ideas about how they developed. Families are an important resource in helping to change things.
  • The effects of a young person’s problems and distress ‘ripple out’ to the whole family, and each person may feel the impact differently. The illness/difficulties will put many demands on members of the family, e.g. looking after the young person, finding the right help, dealing with school, trying to keep the family routine going. It can be emotionally intense and the young person can sometimes become lost when all the energy becomes focused on finding a solution or the right treatment. Meeting with the team offers an opportunity for everyone in the family and those close to the young person to gain support and learn more about what is happening to him/her.
  • Whilst the young person is at Lime Trees he/she will be making many changes to the way they think, and the things that they do. We like the family to catch up with these so they can support the young person in maintaining these changes after discharge.


Lime Trees school

The school has two part time teachers; they are qualified to teach a wide range of subjects including Biology, General Science, Maths, Information Technology, English Language, English Literature, Drama, History, Geography and Religious Education. The school also has an additional teacher who comes in as necessary to tutor French, German, Spanish and Russian. Between them they have also taught A/S Psychology and Philosophy.

The school does have facilities for art and sports; educational visits in the locality, e.g. to the art gallery and museums, are often arranged. It is possible to sit external examinations on the unit, as Lime Trees School is a registered centre for the OCR and AQA examination boards.

The school is well resourced with two classrooms, Internet access (which is monitored), current textbooks and facilities to enable students to pursue their own research for school topics. Young people may bring schoolwork with them and Lime Trees teachers will contact the young person’s own school and arrange for work to be sent. If the young person’s school is reasonably close, the teachers will arrange visits to enable the young person to get back their own school close to the date of discharge or sooner if appropriate. The young persons form tutor or head of year will usually be invited to the forward planning meeting.

The teachers work with the inpatient team very closely in monitoring and observing young people. Both teachers are actively involved in the group programme.