An Innovative Model of Pediatric Emergency Department Mental Health Care: Protocol for a Multicenter Type 1 Effectiveness-Implementation Cluster Randomized Trial Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • Over the past decade, visits to American and Canadian emergency departments (EDs) for child and youth mental health care have increased substantially.1,2 Acute mental health crises can occur as a result of a variety of concerns, including those that are life threatening (eg, suicide attempts), pose safety concerns (eg, suicidal intentions, aggressive behaviors, alcohol and other drug use), and are physically distressing to the child or youth (eg, panic attacks). ED health care providers play a vital role in assessing the safety and well-being of the child or youth and referring them to services for ongoing care.3,4 During the ED visit, assessment and care should pinpoint risks, inform treatment, and consider family needs and preferences as part of a patient-centered approach. Yet, this approach to care is not widely adopted in EDs. Most EDs do not require the use of pediatric-specific mental health tools to guide assessments or have patient-centered procedures in place to guide the care of patients with mental health emergencies.5-7 Our team believes these limitations have led to the provision of acute mental health care that can lack sufficient quality and efficiency. This study protocol describes a trial designed to evaluate if a novel mental health care bundle that was co-designed with parents and youth results in greater improvements in the well-being of children and youth 30 days after seeking ED care for mental health and/or substance misuse concerns compared with existing care protocols. We hypothesize that the bundle will positively impact child and youth well-being, while also providing cost-effective health care system benefits.

authors

  • Newton, Amanda S
  • Prisnie, Kassi
  • Macdonald, Lee A
  • Eltorki, Mo
  • Finkelstein, Yaron
  • Fitzpatrick, Eleanor
  • Gagnon, Isabelle
  • Greenfield, Brian
  • Joubert, Gary I
  • Katz, Laurence Y
  • Lipman, Ellen Louise
  • Mater, Ahmed
  • Plotnick, Laurie H
  • Porter, Robert
  • Sawyer, Scott
  • St John, Kimberly A
  • Sukhera, Javeed
  • Szatmari, Peter
  • Rasiah, Jananee
  • Steele, Margaret
  • Hall, Patricia
  • Thull-Freedman, Jennifer
  • Taljaard, Monica
  • Cappelli, Mario
  • Clark, Sharon E
  • Cost, Katherine T
  • Round, Jeff
  • Cherry, Jonathan
  • Monga, Suneeta
  • Sareen, Jitender
  • Klassen, Terry P
  • Freedman, Stephen B

publication date

  • July 2022