Doctors fear council interference in youth psychiatric care
Family doctors are concerned they will no longer be able to refer all children with psychiatric problems on to specialist help when local councils take over responsibility for youth mental health services next year.
A poll of 875 members of the Dutch family doctors' association shows three-quarters fear that councils will not buy in enough specialist care and that some children have already been turned away, the Volkskrant reports on Monday.
The budget for youth mental health services is being cut by 15 percent next year when local councils take over.
In an earlier survey, the Volkskrant found around a quarter of councils will impose limits on how many children can be treated.
Doctors are also concerned that local councils will demand that they approve all requests for specialist help, even though junior health minister Martin van Rijn has already ruled this out.
Two-thirds of doctors also say they have not yet been approached by local officials to discuss the new set up.