Community-Based Mental Health Programs Improve Youth Performance and Save Millions in School Costs
New data reveal lower dropout rates and improved social and emotional well-being for youth in system of care programs
For example, on average, 15 percent of youth (ages 14-18) nationally fail to reach the next grade level, but among youth who receive comprehensive services through system of care programs, only 8 percent had to repeat a grade. School systems, which had children participating in a systems of care program, saved
The report also reveals that system of care programs is associated with higher graduation rates among high school youth with emotional challenges. On average, 11 percent of youth with emotional challenges drop out of high school each year nationwide, compared to only 8 percent of youth in systems of care.
Youth involved in systems of care also reported improved emotional and behavioral outcomes, such as significant decreases in reported levels of depression and anxiety and significant reductions in suicide attempts. At 12 months, youth in systems of care reported a decrease of 62 percent in suicide attempts–a leading cause of death among U.S. youth 15 to 24 years old. In addition, 16 percent of youth reported lower levels of depression and 21 percent reported lower levels of anxiety at clinically significant levels than when they entered services.
“Improving the outlook for children with mental health challenges is a critical part of improving our health and educational systems,” said
The report is being released on National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day, SAMHSA’s annual demonstration of collaboration among numerous and diverse individuals, organizations, and agencies in the public and private sector working to provide greater access to community-based mental health services for children and youth with serious mental-health needs and their families.
To download “Working Together to Help Youth Thrive in Schools and Communities,” visit www.samhsa.gov/children.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, a public health agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is the lead Federal agency for improving the quality and availability of substance abuse prevention, addiction treatment, and mental health services in
SOURCE Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration