In addition to its physical toll, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating effect on the emotional and psychological well-being of young people across the world. This time of great disruption has exposed the urgent need to address rising rates of anxiety, depression, suicide and other great challenges young people are facing. Researchers and care providers fear that the long-term effects of the current moment – and of inaction to address it – could be severe, particularly for children.
In response, pioneering children’s hospitals are prioritizing mental and behavioral health not only by increasing access to treatment and inpatient service on their campuses by building standalone facilities, but also by partnering with schools, community groups and other local stakeholders to meet the needs of children and families in their communities. From reimagining physical design spaces to enhance the patient and family experience in the hospital to addressing the root causes and social determinants of health that are also contributing to disparities in care, learn from leaders who are at the forefront of addressing urgent mental health and behavioral challenges and how they are organizing systems of care within their communities.