Liasion Team – Information for Parents
Who Are We?
The Paediatric Liaison Team at the Royal Hospital for Sick Children is made up of psychiatrists, psychologists, nurses and sometimes trainee professionals as well as a team secretary. We are one of a number of mental health services within the Royal Hospital for Sick Children.
Whom Do We See?
We see children and young people who are inpatients, or who need a hospital based service for some other reason. We provide a service that seeks to understand and help with the emotional and psychological aspects of illness and injury.
What About Confidentiality?
We keep most of our notes separately from the hospital file. We will let you know how we plan to communicate with your GP and the team who referred you to our service. We will ask you for your permission to talk with other professionals if we think it would be helpful. Some information is kept without names and addresses on a computer file that enables us to audit our work.
What Do We Provide?
The Paediatric Liaison team provides a range of care to fit the needs of each child and their family. After careful assessment we aim to make a plan for moving forward - in joint discussion with the child and the family, as far as possible. This might involve individual work, family work and/or medication advice. Sometimes we refer families on to another team (for example, in the community) if we think this would be helpful. Sometimes our involvement is only for an hour or two. Other times it may be for longer, depending on the needs of the young person and their family.
Where To Find Us
The team is based in the Royal Hospital for Sick Children at the New South Glasgow University Hospital campus.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: “Why has my child’s doctor asked for my child to see the Liaison Team?”
A: The team sees a wide range of young people. For example, some of the children we see have trouble adjusting to their medical conditions, while others may have more severe psychiatric problems. Most of the young people seen by the Liaison Team have a physical problem.
Q: “What are psychiatric, emotional and behavioural symptoms?”
A: A child’s mood may change in that they might become withdrawn, tearful, agitated or anxious. They may be off their food, have disturbed sleep, have increased pain, become more socially isolated or frequently fall out with family and friends. There may also be a change in attendance, performance and behaviour at school.
Q: “Can I have Liaison Team appointments on the same day as I come to the hospital for other appointments?”
A: We will do our best to make arrangements that are convenient for you.
Q: “How do these symptoms relate to physical illness and recovery?”
A: Some children may struggle to discuss their illness. They may be reluctant to take part in treatment such as physiotherapy, occupational therapy or dietetics. The child may become fearful of hospital. They may become less active and outgoing, and be reluctant to try new activities which can help them get better.
Q: “Does this mean my child won’t be seeing their hospital doctor any more?”
A: This will depend on your child’s individual situation, and can be discussed at your appointment. Generally we work with other staff in the hospital.
Q: “Why do you want to see my child alone?”
A: We usually like to spend some time with the parent(s) and child together and then some time with the parent alone. Often the parent has things they would like to let us know that they do not feel comfortable saying in front of the child. Likewise, it can be useful for us to spend some time alone with the child to understand their point of view.