Background: The mission in Dutch youth care is to work together to help the child and its family in the best possible way. Child and adolescent psychiatric consultation seems a good way to contribute to this mission, but this is not self-explanatory. Many colleagues feel uncertain how to maintain their medical responsibility.
Aim: To provide insight in the consultation process, which legislation to apply as well as its practical consequences in various settings.
Method: The effect of legislation is worked out in various consultative settings. The consequences for the process of consultation are worked out as well as the consequences for the persons involved.
Results: Consultation is a good way to collaborate with adult psychiatry as well as youth care. It is important to realise the different roles as well as the different legislative consequences, because of its influence on the consultation process.
Conclusion: While there is a need for psychiatric consultation in the field of youth care, it still is not an obvious method. In addition to political and financial limitations there is uncertainty in the field how to develop consultation the best way. The Dutch Society of Psychiatry published a supportive Guide on consultation, aiming to help in a practical way.