238008 Early Identification Tools and Approaches for Young Children at High Risk for Mental Health Problems

Wednesday, November 2, 2011: 8:30 AM

Wendy Holt, MPP , DMA Health Strategies, Lexington, MA
The author will introduce a new SAMHSA guide, Identifying Mental Health and Substance Use Problems of Children and Youth: A Guide for Child-Serving Organizations that presents the principles for planning and implementing processes to identify children at high risk for these conditions. She will focus on how these principles can be applied for very young children in primary care and child care settings.

Parents often first see signs of mental health problems in their child at very young ages. Addressing these problems early has great promise in promoting healthy development and preventing serious difficulties that can interfere with school, forming friendships and family relationships. Primary care and child care settings offer great promise as setting where such problems can be identified and addressed.

This presentation will provide a model for early identification appropriate for primary care and early education and care. Principles developed by a federal cross-agency workgroup addressing appropriate screening will be shared. Specifically, the presented will address setting goals for the identification of children at high risk, planning and implementing identification activities, and finding and using community assessment and treatment resources for identified children. The challenges faced in each setting and effective strategies to address them will be described. Information and resources tailored for primary care and early care and education and a short list of age appropriate screening tools with well established validity and reliability will be provided.

Learning Areas:
Program planning
Provision of health care to the public

Learning Objectives:
Define approaches primary care and early education and care can take to identify young children at high risk for mental health problems. List appropriate mental health screening tools available for very young children. Describe strategies to effectively partner with providers and caregivers to implement early identification.

Keywords: Infant Health, Child/Adolescent Mental Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the primary author of a guide to be published by SAMHSA, titled Identifying Mental Health and Substance Abuse Problems of Children and Adolescents, which summarizes key steps and principles in planning and implementing screening and other identification initiatives in a variety of child serving settings.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.