What is the pediatric mental health crisis?
How does it affect EDs?
Emergency departments (EDs) are often the front door to care for children in crisis. Utilization for pediatric mental health visits increased by 8% annually between 2015 and 2020 while all other visits increased by 1.5% annually. EDs may struggle to meet the growing and complex needs of these children.
Resources for improving care
For EDs and EMS - This Pediatric Education and Advocacy Kit (PEAK) features pragmatic, synthesized, multidisciplinary resources for suicide screening and prevention--including a new bottom-line recommendation on suicide screening. All resources are free and open access and more will be added over time, including a resource for prehospital practitioners.
For EDs and EMS - Agitation in children in the ED can be dangerous and distressing for patients, families, and ED staff. PEAK: Agitation resources can assist hospital and prehospital teams, in partnership with patients and families, in caring for children experiencing agitation—including identifying the etiology and initiating a range of management strategies. All resources are free and open access and more will be added over time.
For EDs - This quality improvement collaborative, which took place in 2023, brought together ED-based teams from across the nation with experts in pediatric mental health. The teams exchanged evidence-based best practices and ideas to optimize the care and follow-up of children and adolescents presenting with acute suicidality. Watch recordings of the learning sessions or view resources collated during the collaborative.
Pediatric Mental Health Care Access Program (PMHCA) toolkit: Coming soon!
For EDs - A toolkit for both primary care and ED clinicians is in development through a collaboration between the PMHCA program and EMSC.