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MST-PSB Sheffield Team update
The Sheffield MST-PSB service became operational in September 2013 funded by a 2 year grant from the Department for Education (DfE). It was set up as a joint co-ordination between Sheffield Children, young People and Families (CYPF) portfolio within Children’s Social Care and Sheffield Children’s Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. The Sheffield MST-PSB service was the third such service to be developed in the UK and the first in the northern region. Two services already exist, one in London and one in Cambridgeshire.
MST-PSB is the most intensive service that can be offered to a family in the community when a young person has engaged in harmful sexual behaviour in Sheffield. The Sheffield team consists of three professionally qualified youth justice workers with clinical experience, and a full-time supervisor/clinical manager, who is a principal clinical psychologist. The team is supported by a 0.5 wte senior business support and operationally overseen by the MST service manager. The target population is young people, aged 10 to 17 years old, at risk of out-of-home placement due to sexually related antisocial or delinquent behaviours and/or young people involved with the youth justice system due to problem sexual behaviours.
Young people are eligible if they are living in a family environment (including birth family, kinship care or foster placement) which represents a permanent placement for the young person. Young people are also eligible if they are in an out-of-home placement at the time of referral, but will be returning during the course of treatment to a family environment (including birth family, kinship care or foster placement) which represents a permanent placement for the young person.
Referrals are accepted through a Multiagency referral process, which is a process implemented from April 2014 in which all cases with identified harmful sexual behaviour (HSB) are screened through to an operational HSB panel that make recommendations as to treatment outcome. With respect to cases held within youth offending services, MST-PSB may be delivered as part of, for example, a Youth Conditional Caution, a Parenting Order or a programme requirement of a Youth Rehabilitation Order. The team can also accept regional referrals within a 90 minute travel distance.
The capacity of the team at any one time range from 9-12 cases depending on distance travelled per case (3-4 cases per therapist, three therapists). The length of the intervention is 5-7 months (with a possibility of extending for a further month should the need be identified). Our average length of time spent working with a family is 6 months.
Up until this point, the Sheffield team has seen some great results for the families they have worked with and the service is increasingly becoming embedded within the Sheffield service provision for Harmful Sexual Behaviour. Work is now being undertaken to secure long-term sustainability and to ensure that this provision will be available to young people and their families across the South Yorkshire region.