The article talks about the COVID-19 pandemic and the increasing rates that were already high, but I think the fact that the study was done over ER visits in 2019-2019 speaks to the fact that this problem was getting worse long before that.
“ER staffers may be able to stabilize a child in a mental health care crisis, but research has shown that timely follow-up with a provider is key to their success long-term. Unfortunately, there just doesn’t seem to be enough of it, according to a new study co-authored by Hoffmann. Without the proper follow-up, these children too often wound up back in the ER. “
This is a society-wide problem. These kids who can’t get care will likely end up back in crisis, which will continue well into adulthood. We already see this in adults who cannot access care, one ER visit after the other for years.
The people who work in these ERs do incredible work to stabilize them in the short term, but without long-term care, we will continue to lose people to mental health struggles and suicide. If your leaders aren’t sick of that and willing to do something about it, you need new leaders. In the meantime, read more about the situation at the link below.