National Campaign Highlights Barriers to Children’s Mental Health Care

May 01, 2013 at 3:17 pm

MetroFocus talks to the Child Mind Institute’s Dr. Harold Koplewicz about the organization’s upcoming children’s mental health campaign.

With the Boston marathon bombing still fresh in the memories of families around the country, the Child Mind Institute is preparing to launch a month-long online campaign to highlight issues around children’s mental health.

“Well, we think that at least  for one month out of the year, there should be a month where we’re talking about children’s mental health, that psychiatric and learning disorders are real, they’re common, and they’re treatable,” said Dr. Harold Koplewicz, founding president of the Child Mind Institute.

Throughout the month of May, the Speak Up For Kids campaign will harness online resources to draw national attention to mental health care for kids.  The initiative is made up of 75 partner organizations and mental health professionals, covering topics ranging from improving school safety to suicidal youth.

The campaign will also highlight existing barriers to diagnosing and caring for children’s mental health.  According to Dr. Koplewicz, a child and adolescent psychiatrist, barriers to seeking help include stigma around psychiatric disorders, affordable access to mental health coverage and lack of investment in science.  “Even today, people will talk about diabetes and cancer and AIDS, but they don’t talk about their child’s depression, or something as common as ADHD or dyslexia,” said Koplewicz.

Web Extra: Dr. Harold Koplewicz discusses motivations for organizing the Speak Up For Kids campaign and how the public can get involved.