- Our Help for Children and Families
- Our Clinical Work and Projects
- Our work with Families involved in Legal Proceedings
- Specialist Parenting Assessments and Treatment
Who we are
The specialist assessment and treatment service (SATS) team is a multi-disciplinary team with input from child and adult psychiatry, clinical psychology, family therapy, child and adolescent psychotherapy, play therapy and social work.
What we do
The team carries out assessments and therapeutic interventions of children and families in public and private family law proceedings, in cases where there are concerns or dilemmas about:
- Parental mental health and/or learning disability and the impact on parenting
- Psychiatric, psychological and cognitive profiles of parents and children
- Parenting capacity
- Current and likely future risk
- Entrenched parental contact and residence disputes and placement needs
- Childhood adversity; such as child abuse and neglect, exposure to domestic violence and traumatic events
- Acute trauma (in the peri-traumatic and post-traumatic period)
- Children's therapeutic and placement needs
- Stability of adoptive/ foster placements
- Where children should live and/ or the frequency and type of contact they should have with the non-resident paren
The team has specific experience of working with different cultural groups and interpreters, thus able to undertake culturally sensitive work with families from a wide range of ethnic backgrounds.
How we help
We are dedicated to serving the most disadvantaged children in society. Our approach is based on systemic mentalization, psychodynamic principles with a strong emphasis on attachment-focused assessments to serve the best interests of the child.
Our assessments often begin with a meeting involving the network, i.e. parents in the family and professionals, during which the assessment process is outlined and the concerns about the family are explored.
- We help family members understand the assessment process and ensure they have the opportunity to ask questions and air their views during the process.
- Family members are seen individually and together, both at the Centre and in the community (home, school and other relevant settings).
- Intensity and scope of assessments depend on the specifics of each case.
- Team members write a comprehensive report upon completion and attend court when required for cross-examination at the final hearing.
According to our assessment of the needs of each case, team members work individually or in clusters of specialisms.
We offer therapeutic work for children, adults, parental couples and families, as well as multi-family group work. This includes a wide range of evidence-based interventions, including MBT, CBT, Systemic Family Psychotherapy and IPT.
How we learn and develop
We work closely as a multidisciplinary team and discuss and learn from all the cases that we work with. Although we have a great deal of experience in this work, there are often individual situations which need fresh thinking and ideas. This is a key aspect of our work.
We are also committed to ensuring that we work in a systematic way using well tested methods of assessment and treatment. To help with this, we are in the process of manualizing our approach so that we can be transparent and consistent about the way we go about this work.
We have also carried out evaluations of how the recommendations of the service are implemented, and the experience of the children and young people who have come to see us.
How much does it cost
Each assessment is tailor-made and therefore the total cost depends on the requirements. An estimate can be requested once an enquiry form has been submitted. This may be revised upon receipt of a Letter of Instruction. A cost estimate will be created based on this information.
If you are interested in commissioning a court assessment service, if you have any further queries, or for an informal discussion, please contact us.
How to find out more
To make an enquiry or referral, you will need to give us information in writing to consider the best way to assess the case. We accept instructions from Children’s Guardians, Social Services and Solicitors.
Please return the completed form to the following email address:
Telephone: +44(0)20 7794 2313
To download out service leaflets please click here: