Issue Brief

No. 801

The Provider System for Children's Mental Health: Workforce Capacity and Effective Treatment
October 26, 2004

Author

Jane Koppelman, Consultant

Summary

This issue brief examines two issues that are key to meeting children’s unmet needs for mental health care: ensuring that the provider supply is adequate and that the care delivered is effective. It describes the shortage of qualified providers to address children’s mental disorders, as well its possible causes; it describes how managed care, to a certain extent, drives practice patterns; and it discusses the gray areas in deciding which providers are most qualified to deliver what care. In addition, this paper introduces what is known about evidence-based care in children’s mental health, the extent to which it is being taught and practiced, the extent to which health plans are adopting such practices, and the effect such strategies may have on the makeup of the children’s mental health provider field.

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