Mental Health Needs of Children and Young People with Intellectual Disabilities 2nd edition


Originally entitled ‘Mental Health Needs of Children and Young People with Learning Disabilities’, this new 2nd edition focuses on the care and support of those with moderate and severe learning disabilities (intellectual disabilities).


Mental Health Needs of Children and Young People with Intellectual Disabilities (2nd edition) focuses on the care and support of those with moderate and severe learning disabilities (intellectual disabilities). In addition to bringing the content fully up to date, the editors, both longstanding experts in this field, have commissioned the most experienced contributors to address new topics such as gender issues and mental health in education. The importance of developing evidence-based practice is a key theme of the book, acknowledging its key role in helping professionals and practitioners to be able to provide high-quality personalised care for children and young people with intellectual disabilities who have mental health needs.

This handbook provides health and social care professionals with a sound knowledge base for shaping and enhancing their practice, along with the skills and confidence to improve the outcomes for these young people. Each chapter includes short case illustrations, examples of good practice, reflections on current practice, key learning points, references and key websites for further exploration.








Mental Health Needs of Children and Young People with Intellectual Disabilities will be useful to child and adolescent psychiatrists, psychologists in health and educational services, nurses (children’s nurses, school nurses, mental health and learning disability nurses), social workers, teachers, service commissioners and providers, IAPT Psychological Wellbeing Practitioners and IAPT High Intensity Therapists.


ISBN: 9781912755493

Publication: November 2020


Section one – Prevalence, Legal and Cultural Issues

Epidemiology; aetiology; Mental Health Act; mental capacity; forensic issues; safeguarding; cultural Issues; gender Issues

Section two – Assessment and Diagnostic Issues

Psychiatric conditions; psychological issues; functional analysis; speech and language therapy perspective; occupational therapy perspective

Section three – Interventions and Services

Psychological and behavioural interventions; pharmacology; service provision; education; transitions


Dr Jane McCarthy is Consultant Psychiatrist & Medical Lead for Learning Disabilities, Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, UK; Honorary Associate Professor in Psychological Medicine,  University of Auckland, New Zealand; Visiting Senior Lecturer, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience, UK.

Jane joined St Andrew’s Healthcare Nottinghamshire in April 2011 as clinical director, leading the development of the clinical assessment and treatment models for the secure pathways for adults with autism spectrum disorders and those with intellectual disabilities. Jane has a wealth of experience as a specialist in the psychiatry of intellectual disability and she has actively contributed for over 15 years through research, teaching, and as a consultant psychiatrist towards service delivery and development.

From September 2009 until December 2010, she acted as clinical advisor for adults with autism at the Department of Health, supporting the first-year delivery of the strategy Fulfilling and Rewarding Lives: The strategy for adults with Autism in England. Jane was the interim course leader for the MSc Mental Health in Learning Disabilities at King’s College, London. Jane’s key research interests include the outcomes of psychiatric disorders in people with intellectual, including those with autistic spectrum disorders. In the last five years Jane has significantly contributed to research in this area, having obtained funding for a number of research initiatives including ‘Mental Health Outcomes in Adults with Autism and Learning Disabilities’.

Dr Sarah H Bernard is a consultant psychiatrist with the Mental Health of Learning Disabilities team, which is a stream of the Developmental Neuropsychology and Neuropsychiatry Service. She is also the child psychiatry lead for undergraduate training.



  1. Anne Longfield OBE, Children’s Commissioner for England

    “The aim of this book, on children and young people’s mental health, is to help raise awareness about all the important issues affecting our next generation of young adults. Written by subject experts, it provides key information for workers who are not currently mental health specialists.. This book provides valuable guidance on how to enhance existing services.. I hope that this book will go a long way towards providing front line workers with the knowledge and skills to recognise children and young people’s mental health needs.”

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