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Pediatric Mental Health Care Access Program (PMHCA): Improving Behavioral Health Services

To meet children's behavioral health needs, our programs help pediatric health professionals with consultation, training, resources, and referrals. This support helps them effectively add behavioral health to routine checkups.

Why is this program needed?

More than ever, pediatric health professionals are seeing children who struggle with anxiety, depression, and other behavioral concerns. Many of these professionals need help to provide these children the care they need.

Which pediatric health professionals can benefit from this program?

This program supports professionals in pediatric, emergency department, and school settings.

How do awardees support these pediatric health professionals?

Awardees organize pediatric mental health care teams. These teams are made up of:

  • Child and adolescent psychiatrists
  • Care coordinators
  • Other licensed behavioral health professionals (such as psychologists, social workers, and mental health counselors)

Professionals can contact these teams by phone.

What happens when a health professional calls the phone lines?

When a pediatrician or other health professional calls the service, the experts:

  • Assess the patient’s situation
  • Recommend treatment options
  • Refer callers to other specialists, as needed

How does this build workforce capacity?

The teams help pediatric health professionals add behavioral health services to their practice by:

  • Equipping them with knowledge, skills, practice, and attitudes to treat a child themselves or to understand when to refer the child to another specialist
  • Offering educational webinars so professionals can better screen, identify, treat, and refer children with behavioral health conditions
  • Creating directories of specialists in the pediatrician’s service area and resources to address a child’s needs

What grantee guidance and resources are available?

Like to see what state-level programs look like? Watch these videos from our awardees.

Where are these programs?

We have 54 programs. They reach:

  • 46 states
  • The District of Columbia
  • The U.S. Virgin Islands
  • The Republic of Palau
  • The Chickasaw Nation
  • The Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians
  • The Federated States of Micronesia
  • The Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands
  • Guam
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Recent awardees

Find awardee names, locations, and funding information:

Program expansion

(Awards to the AAP and EIIC continue through 2024)

Have a question about PMHCA?

Contact our project officers.

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