Yesterday I shared some bad news from the UK about how their system was failing to meet the needs of children dealing with abuse. In an effort to be fair, here’s the situation in the US, told through one women’s story, and statistics like this one:
“There is only one practicing child and adolescent psychiatrist in the U.S. for about every 1,800 children who need one, according to data from the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry.”
When we see numbers like this, it’s easy to say “Well we just need more therapists.”, but that is a solution that may or may not be reasonable, and will take a really long time. (How many people can really study and become therapists specializing in working with youth?) Which is why I am on board for trying all sorts of new things and seeing which ones can be effective. Peer groups, parental support groups, virtual reality, online therapy, mental health apps, etc. Why not give them a shot? No, I’m not saying we should push kids toward treatments that clearly don’t work, but at the rate kids are unable to get any treatments today, we need to be working to find new things that are effective. Because all of those kids can’t simply wait for there to be more therapy appointments available and covered by insurance. That’s not happening soon enough.