Children’s hospitals, pediatricians urge Biden to prioritize youth mental health

Children’s hospitals and pediatricians are calling on the Biden administration to prioritize children’s mental, emotional and behavioral health in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Children’s Hospital Association (CHA) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) launched an awareness campaign on Wednesday to ask the administration and lawmakers to provide more funds to programs to address the escalating crisis among children and youth.

The group is seeking increased funding for existing mental and behavioral health programs, through the Department of Health and Human Services’s Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and Health Resources and Services Administration.

They also think Congress should provide new funding for activities at the state and local level to support children, like telehealth, training for crisis response and school-based services.

The digital advertising campaign is expected to run for several weeks with an estimated six-figure budget.