RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS: Mental Health Care for Youth. Who Gets It? How Much Does It Costs? Who Pays? Where Does the Money Go?
RAND CORP SANTA MONICA CA
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In the National Action Agenda for Childrens Mental Health, the U.S. Surgeon General warns that the nation is facing public crisis in caring for children and adolescents with behavioral, psychological, and emotional problems. The report, released in January 2001, notes that 1 in 10 young people suffer from mental illness severe enough to cause some level of impairment. Yet fewer than 20 percent of these children receive needed treatment in any given year. Efforts to improve mental health care for children and adolescents are under way and include parity laws for private insurance and the reorganization of public services. Parity laws mandate equal coverage for mental health and physical health care. At the policy level, however, many of these efforts are hindered by the lack of an up-to-date, comprehensive national picture of which troubled children are getting care, how much it costs to provide it, who pays for that care, and how resources are being used. In fact, the most recent child-oriented studies, limited primarily to adolescents, report data that are 15 years old, predating the rapid growth of managed care. Moreover, since that time, a number of advances have been made in treating mental illness.
- Economics and Cost Analysis
- Medicine and Medical Research