There has been a staggering increase in the rate of students that experience a mental health concern since Jan. 2020.1 The American Academy of Pediatrics2 in 2021 declared a ‘national emergency in children’s mental health’ as the need to support the social and emotional wellbeing of our campus communities remains paramount.
Mental health has far-reaching implications for students and schools, yet the demand for youth mental health supports continues to outpace the supply of available services. That need was the catalyst for SchoolMed: Mental Health, which uses a novel approach to bring timely screenings, teletherapy, and crisis supports as well as a pathway to extended care for students and their families.
Anxiety, depression, grief, harmful thoughts, and life changes have impacts that reach far beyond those that experience them, creating a ripple effect that impacts the classroom, families, and our communities. In this Good News Series, we explore some of those impacts.
The Mental Health Ripple Effect Part IV: The Community Impact
The Ripple Effect communities feel when children and adolescents experience mental health concerns varies greatly. Undiagnosed mental illness can often contribute to social issues, such as poverty and homelessness, but through early intervention and a supportive environment, positive outcomes are possible.
Students who lack access to proper mental health supports often fare worse in the classroom, leading to lower overall graduation rates. Research shows that adults with higher levels of education are more likely to earn higher incomes and less likely to experience poverty and homelessness than their peers with fewer educational credentials.3
One survey found education level is a primary predictor of future health and happiness, reporting that adults with a college degree experience better health outcomes, live longer lives, and enjoy more stable marriages.4
National awareness around the need to address mental health concerns in childhood means there are more funding opportunities available to school systems than ever. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services agency, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHS), and other state and local players have put hundreds of millions of dollars of funding in place to support schools’ efforts to expanding health and safety programs.
Education is an important factor in fostering healthy and vibrant communities. Supporting students on their journey to emotional health and well-being by providing timely access to mental health services at school is vital to providing safe and healthy communities for all.
School-based programs remove traditional barriers to access to care and ensure health equity, enabling all students the opportunity for a successful future.
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About Goodside Health
Goodside Health is advancing the delivery of pediatric care by partnering with communities to provide access to telehealth, mental health, and well-care services at school, at home, and in the clinic. Relentless advocates for expanding access to care and promoting health equity, Goodside Health leverages a Whole-Child Approach to care and lives our mission of closing gaps in children’s healthcare through innovation and execution. To learn more about Goodside Health, please visit www.goodsidehealth.com.