Helping Our Kids When They Need It the Most
The National Institute of Mental Health reports that 1 in 5 kids will experience a mental health problem before the age of 18, and about 25% of these children will experience a severe, persistent psychiatric illness. The good news is that these illnesses are always treatable, frequently curable, and often preventable. The bad news is that access to care, especially psychotherapy, is limited by poor insurance reimbursements and the lingering stigma of mental illness. This has led to a CRISIS in this country. Children and families are suffering – right here in our community.
Newton-Wellesley Hospital is deeply committed to providing mental health services to the kids in our community through our Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Service, established in 2007 by Dr. Michael Jellinek, then-President of Newton-Wellesley Hospital. Now under the leadership of Dr. Susan Swick, who holds the Michael S. Jellinek, MD, Chief of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry position, a highly skilled group of committed physicians, clinicians and social workers provide evaluations, consultations and treatment, often involving the entire family. Families no longer need to suffer alone or in silence.
While other hospitals in the area have drastically reduced or even eliminated their pediatric psychiatry services, Newton-Wellesley has expanded its services to respond to the overwhelming demand.
Last year, over 1,600 kids were treated at Newton-Wellesley for mental health issues. We saw 1,200 children and teens in our Outpatient Clinic and over 400 kids in emotional crisis came into our Emergency Department – each of whom required lengthy and complex evaluation and referral services. In addition, our child and adolescent psychiatrists saw patients admitted to our Inpatient Pediatrics Unit with serious psychiatric and medical issues.
Dr. Swick and her team have developed a successful, sustainable model for providing clinical best practice-based child and adolescent mental health services in our community. Dr. Swick continues to lead the effort to provide a multi-layered and coordinated approach. This will have tremendous impact and help children and families in need.
The Need is Critical. . . the Time is NOW
We continue to experience an overwhelming and rapidly increasing demand for our pediatric mental health services. Gifts raised through the Hospital's Gala and other leadership donations have been used to add staff, capacity and services. An endowment fund of $5+ Million has been established to generate enough annual income to allow for further expansion and to protect the program from budget cuts due to inadequate insurance reimbursement rates. Additional funds from the community are still needed to continue building this endowment so that we can expand the scope of the Program as the need for such services continues to grow.
We urge you to consider a gift of any amount to support Newton-Wellesley Hospital's Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Service. Your support will enable our pediatric mental health care team to devote the time required to ensure the best possible outcome for each and every child or teen who seeks our help.
Thank you - your philanthropy will have an immediate and
lasting impact on the kids and families in our community.