Community Mental Health Team for Adults of Working Age (18-64)

Coronavirus (COVID-19): change to service

On advice from the government regarding the Coronavirus (COVID-19), some services have changed. Find the latest information and advice about our services for vulnerable adults in Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole.

See further information about changes to services.

If you think you need a referral to the community mental health team (CMHT) it is often best to talk to your GP first. Your GP will contact us directly. 

The CMHT: 18 to 64 is based at Alderney Community Hospital, Ringwood Road, central within the community it serves in order to make it accessible to you, carers and families, to facilitate rapid response and continuity of service provision and care.

Aims of the service

Poole CMHT: 18 to 64 aims to provide a needs led community mental health service for people with a severe and enduring mental health condition, that:

  • gives advice on the management of mental health problems
  • provides a seamless and integrated service so that you and carers receive flexible, holistic and responsive care
  • provides treatment and care for those with more complex and enduring needs through focussing on individual needs
  • eliminate any inequalities/differential outcomes experienced as a result of race, disability, gender, age, religious belief or faith or sexual orientation
  • promote social inclusion and recovery for all
  • delivers choice throughout your care pathway. These may include accessing primary care services, secondary care assessment, treatment and care and inpatient care
  • improve joint working between health and social care services

Who we can help

Team members will principally, but not exclusively, focus their caseloads on those people who have a severe and enduring mental health condition. This will be determined through the assessment of risk and other medical/social factors identified within the Assessment and Care Planning Guidance

Eligibility for a service from the community mental health team (CMHT) is determined by both diagnosis and acceptance criteria


The broad diagnostic categories of people to be served by community mental health teams are:

  • schizophrenia and psychotic disorders
  • affective disorders such as mania, manic depression and moderate/severe depression, especially where recurrent
  • eating disorders
  • severe mental health problems following childbirth
  • severe neurotic, stress related and somatoform disorder, such as severe phobias, anxiety disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder which have not responded to appropriate treatment in primary care
  • severe personality disorder co-existing with the above and/or personality disorder that causes significant distress to the patient and where they may benefit from specialist involvement


Individuals within these diagnostic groups will have high priority for acceptance on to caseloads where one or more of the following criteria exist.

Risk factors can be:

  • current or recent moderate/high risk of intentional self harm
  • failure to comply with treatment when this is judged to be necessary for improvement or at least maintenance of mental health
  • moderate/high risk to others
  • risk of harm to carers due to the stress of the caring role
  • putting self at risk for example self-neglect
  • risk of abuse by others, for example physical, sexual, emotional or financial
  • co-existing alcohol or substance misuse (dual diagnosis)
  • frequent crises in recent past, leading to an increase in treatment
  • impaired ability to function effectively in the community without significant support from multiple agencies, including health
  • longstanding need for care in undertaking activities of daily living
  • behavioural disturbance which may lead to breakdown of current social situation

Duration of mental illness is not a necessary criterion for inclusion.

Where individuals have a severe mental illness and a substance misuse problem, they will be the responsibility of the community mental health team.

What services are available

The mental health services provide assessment, treatment and care for adults of working age who require specialist mental health services.

Those who require a more intensive service from the community mental health team (CMHT) will be allocated a care co-ordinator who will agree a care plan with you. The care or treatment will be based upon the outcomes of the assessment and identified needs, and will always aim to enable you to increase your opportunities to be socially included, develop your independence and recover from the effect of your mental health problems. For those who do not need quite as much support, a lead professional will be allocated to develop a care plan with you.

Care and services are provided to clients who are subject to the provisions of the Mental Health Act (1983), including implementation of the Mental Health Act and Capacity Act.

The Poole Community Mental Health Team for Adults of Working Age 18 - 64 (CMHT: 18 to 64) is an integrated team, staffed by health and social care. Team members include various grades of doctors (including consultant psychiatrists), social workers, support time and recovery workers, mental health carers officer, community mental health nurses, support administrative staff, occupational therapist and psychologists.

Mental Health Act Assessment

Page last updated: 13 November 2020
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