We’ve seen the headlines. Children are in crisis. At any given time, roughly 200,000 children in San Diego County are struggling with mental health concerns. Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego alone has seen a 2,800 percent increase in pediatric and adolescent mental health emergency department visits since 2011. The COVID-19 pandemic has only exacerbated this problem, where isolation, lack of resources, loss of a family member and other hardships have added additional stress and anxiety.
Now is the time to act.
THE PRIMARY CARE MENTAL HEALTH INTEGRATION PROGRAM
At Rady Children’s, we believe every child deserves access to comprehensive, high-quality behavioral health services, at the right time. This means taking a different approach by identifying needs and providing intervention early.
About the program
The Rady Children’s Primary Care Mental Health Integration Program launched in 2020 to integrate mental and behavioral health care within traditional pediatric care settings. Easy-to-access services are offered through trusted community partnerships where children and families already seek care and are in an environment where they feel safe, like their pediatrician’s office.
Currently offered at select Children’s Primary Care Medical Group and Children’s Physicians Medical Group locations, pediatricians screen youth for mental health conditions during a typical medical appointment. If deemed necessary, the pediatrician can refer patients for treatment with an embedded therapist in the primary care practice. Through this program, kids and families can conveniently access both medical care and behavioral health services in one location.
Through screenings, early intervention, increased access to mental health care, prevention programs and evidence-based treatments, we are taking a proactive approach to whole-child wellness for kids in San Diego and beyond. As of June 2022, we’ve screened over 153,000 children and referred more than 7,400 of those children to mental health clinicians for further treatment.
But we know the need is greater, and the resources few. We have an incredible opportunity to make sure that every child receives the very best in pediatric mental health care and we believe that Rady Children’s is uniquely positioned to meet this full spectrum of needs. Philanthropy is changing the trajectory of children’s lives for the better.
Join us in our vision to ensure every child and family in need will be supported through a holistic model of care. We believe that, together, we can ensure happy and bright futures for children.