Pediatric and Adolescent Collaborative Care Roundtable – MMHPI – Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute
topics Policy Research Pediatric and Adolescent Collaborative Care Roundtable

Pediatric and Adolescent Collaborative Care Roundtable

The nation is facing a critical youth and mental health crisis. Half of all mental health conditions manifest by age 14, and yet children and youth are waiting an average of eight to 10 years before they access care. This demonstrates that we are missing an opportunity to intervene at a time when services can have the most impact. The Collaborative Care Model (CoCM) is the integrated behavioral health model with the strongest evidence base to effectively address the needs of our mental health care system, including for youth and children. On January 26 and 27, 2023, the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute partnered with the University of Texas at Austin Dell Medical School (DMS) to host an Inaugural Pediatric and Adolescent Collaborative Care Roundtable to achieve and document expert consensus on key pediatric collaborative care model (CoCM) implementation elements and the readiness of the model to be scaled for pediatric populations.

Twenty of the nation’s preeminent experts in pediatric CoCM attended the Roundtable, sharing their experiences regarding real-world implementation across dimensions. Participants overwhelmingly agreed that pediatric CoCM is an immediately actionable and practical solution to the current pediatric mental health crisis nationwide. The Roundtable identified opportunities to clarify further best practices for optimal scaling of pediatric CoCM implementation and achieved consensus on multiple aspects of pediatric CoCM implementation, especially in clinical operations, stakeholder engagement, and program evaluation. Participants also identified several areas with the potential to improve the effectiveness of pediatric CoCM, including the specific role of the behavioral health care manager (BHCM), optimal credentials of the psychiatric consultant, and specific program inclusion and exclusion criteria. Detailed Roundtable findings are outlined in the white paper.

This white paper highlights important action items for practices, health system leaders, and policymakers based on key takeaways from the Roundtable. Next steps include

  • Creating standardized documents with broad applicability for pediatric CoCM program implementation, engagement, and evaluation.
  • Providing guidance and scripting for training the BHCM to perform specific pediatric CoCM tasks.
  • Building out an advocacy framework for increasing pediatric CoCM reimbursement rates.

The Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute looks forward to continuing to partner with the Roundtable participants and other organizations to build upon these findings to promote health equity and access to evidenced-based care for our nation’s youth and their families.