Recently, the American Board of Pediatrics (ABP) cited a critical lack of pediatric residency training for behavioral and mental health problems and proposed more education in preventing, recognizing, and managing these conditions. Here’s why any change needs to start with a hard look at what our priorities are.
I want to commend the new Clinical Report, “Suicide and Suicide Attempts in Adolescents,” issued by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Committee on Adolescence. The lead author, Benjamin Shain, MD, and the Committee wrote a clear, concise, well-referenced report that is highly relevant to the practicing primary care pediatrician.
Pediatricians often find themselves sitting across from teenagers trying to counsel them on wise and safe sexual practices. Unsure how much or what kind of information parents provide about sex, these conversations can be as awkward as they are important.
I believe we have an opportunity to improve the care of our children by overcoming the stigma of mental health disorders and other barriers, and by applying professional standards in the pediatric medical home for the provision of mental health services to children.