On May 3rd, 2022, HHS announced, through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Health Center Program, its’ expansion of investment towards strengthening partnerships between schools and health centers. To do so, HHS awarded $25 million to expand services that provide comprehensive physical and mental health care to children and youth. These funds will be granted to HRSA-funded health centers in underserved communities in an effort to reduce disparities and increase access to affordable health care. This announcement furthers the Biden-Harris administration’s commitment to strengthening mental health throughout the country.
Across the U.S., mental health in children has declined over the years and COVID-19 has only exacerbated this issue. According to the American Medical Association’s journal JAMA Pediatrics, between 2016-2020,anxiety increased by 29% and depression increased by 27% in children and youth. With May being Mental Health Awareness Month, HHS investment in not only physical but mental health care highlights the importance of parity for children to grow up and learn in healthy environments.
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