Early Detection for Better Mental Health
Mental health challenges affect at least one in 20 young people. If these issues are identified and treated early, children can grow up to live healthy, productive lives. But in the case of children at risk, their mental health problems are not identified early—often children of color do not receive mental health services until they enter the juvenile justice system. The costs—financial and otherwise—to the community and the individual are high, often including years of intensive treatment or time spent in the justice system. To treat mental illness in children, it’s important to spot it early, identifying and intervening before disorders develop or become serious.
We evolve as we learn. Our forthcoming new Strategic Plan and focus on Health Equity is a reflection of this adaptation. Check back in May 2013 for an overview of the new strategy.
The following Goals and Objectives serve as a strategic framework for our current Children’s Mental Health initiative:
(Note: Children’s Mental Health culminates as a separate priority area in 2014. Actions to advance mental health integration and parity will be addressed within the Health Equity initiative.)
Goal 1: Maximize CT Health’s existing investment in children’s mental health early identification and intervention efforts.
Objective 1: Support the Children’s Mental Health Initiative and share results with decision makers and other stakeholders.
Objective 2: Support advocacy efforts to reduce the number of children ages 6-14 entering intensive treatment and/or entering the juvenile justice system due to mental health problems.