Five Challenges Child Welfare Agencies Face in Meeting Children’s Mental Health Needs and How to Solve Them
Children’s mental health is a growing public health crisis. Further magnified by the pandemic, pediatric mental health-related emergency room visits and suicide deaths for children are on the rise. An estimated one in five children experience a mental health condition in a given year, yet half may not receive needed treatment. In the absence of easily accessible and available community-based supports, these needs too often remain under- or unaddressed until they escalate to a crisis point or behaviors that can lead to emergency medical services, placement in a group facility, or involvement with the criminal justice system.
A new policy brief from the GPL explores five common operational challenges child welfare agencies face in meeting children’s mental health needs and offers tactical solutions that states can use to address each for children in foster care.