What Can the FOCUS E-mail Discussion Group Tell Us About the Issues Facing CAMH Professionals?

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Background:The FOCUS e-mail discussion group was established in 1998 with the aim of facilitating information-sharing between professionals working in child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS).Method:A content analysis was carried out on messages sent to the FOCUS e-mail discussion group between September 2004 and August 2005.Results:Discussion topics were widely distributed across twelve main themes, reflecting the breadth of issues discussed by CAMH professionals. The five most frequently discussed were: clinical cases; workforce issues; interventions; service policy; and service organisation.Conclusion:The findings demonstrate the usefulness of the FOCUS e-mail discussion group as a means of identifying the key issues facing CAMH professionals and consequently its potential to inform healthcare practice and policy.

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