Most of the estimated six to nine million children and adolescents in the United States with serious emotional disturbances are not getting the help they need, according to federal health officials, mental health experts, and mental health advocacy groups.
This unmet need is coming under unprecedented scrutiny by federal health officials, professional groups, and others.
Last December, US Surgeon General David Satcher released Mental Health: A Report of the Surgeon General. This 500-page publication, the first-ever Surgeon General's report on this issue, underscores that a range of barriers make it difficult for people with mental illness—both children and adults—to receive appropriate care.
Stephenson J. Children With Mental Problems Not Getting the Care They Need. JAMA. 2000;284(16):2043-2044. doi:10.1001/jama.284.16.2043