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Pediatric and Adolescent Behavioral Health Community of Practice
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, delivering quality care to pediatric and adolescent patients necessitates coordination of care that factors in the patients’ unique care needs. Children are typically healthy, with their care based on a preventative approach. However, as many as 22 percent of children living below the federal poverty line and 17.4 percent of children between the ages of 2 and 8 have been diagnosed with a mental, behavioral, or developmental health disorder. As children move into adolescence (between 11 and 21 years of age), with brain development still in process and the part of the brain that affects judgement still growing, risky behaviors are common. This is also when many behavioral health problems first become evident and when experimentation with drugs and alcohol often begins. Sexual activity and romantic relationships can also raise health and emotional challenges. The coordination of care that occurs within an integrated health care model has been shown to best screen for and address the needs of youth needing behavioral health services. 

The target audience is Health Center staff from various departments and disciplines who provide direct or supportive care to pediatric and adolescent patients and their families.

At the end of this bi-weekly, 8-session CoP, participants will:
• Understand the behavioral health needs of children and adolescents
• Understand how to design organizational practices and policies to establish a family-centered medical home model in a primary care setting
• Develop and implement care strategies to meet pediatric and adolescent behavioral health needs.

Earn 1.5 continuing education credits for each CoP session, with a maximum of 12 CEs for participation in all eight sessions.
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