This episode of “Pediatric Meltdown” features an insightful conversation with Doctor Sandy Chung, the 2023 president of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Dr. Chung joins host Dr. Lia Gaggino to discuss the importance of investing in children’s mental health. The AAP is a national organization that represents over 67,000 pediatricians and aims to promote the health and well-being of children. Dr. Sandy Chung’s advocacy work through VMAP and AAP has been instrumental in shaping the discourse on children’s mental health and providing access to mental health care. While policymakers need to understand the need for long-term investment in children’s mental health, it is also the responsibility of every individual to prioritize mental health and create supportive environments for young people. Let us all work towards prioritizing the mental health of children and building a brighter future for coming generations.
[00:33 -18:39] Being the First Chinese American President of the AAP
Overcoming barriers and inspiring change
Importance of breaking stereotypes and categories
Encouraging individuals to pursue leadership roles
Finding the right group of like-minded professionals
[18:40 – 27:11] Making Mental Health Care Sustainable and Accessible
Implementing group therapy appointments, integrated behavioral health, brief interventions, and collaborative care to make mental health care more accessible and affordable
The AAP is actively working on making mental health care a top child health priority and advocating for sustainable funding and support
AAP aims to raise awareness about the value of pediatricians in early mental health intervention and promote the importance of prevention and resilience-building in children.
It is crucial for individuals, government, employers, and society as a whole to prioritize and support mental health care to ensure healthy and productive adult outcomes.
[27:12 – 35:13] Challenges in Addressing Mental Health in Healthcare
Lack of awareness and understanding of the importance of mental health in healthcare
The need for momentum and improvement in addressing mental health
The broader conversation of investing in children’s well-being
Short-term perspective in healthcare financing and the need for a long-term investment approach
[35:14 – 41:19] Embracing Opportunities and Making a Difference in Pediatric Practice
Letting go of future worries: Embracing the uncertainty of life and career progression
Seizing opportunities: The power of taking chances and making a positive impact
Making a difference, big or small: Recognizing the potential to create change in everyday practice
Preventing future hardships: Harnessing the experiences of pediatric care to improve outcomes for children and families
[41:20 – 46:17] Closing Segment Takeaway
Links to resources mentioned on the show
National Network of Child Psychiatry Access Programs – find one near you!
Other episodes you may like:
112 Schizophrenia: Recognizing the Early Symptoms
96 AAP Blueprint for Youth Suicide Prevention: A Roadmap
91 Youth Mental Health Crisis: An Opportunity for Innovation
Key quotes for Twitter:
“Investing in children’s mental health is part of a bigger conversation about investing in children.”… Dr. Sandy Chung
“Optimizing children’s health and productivity is everyone’s responsibility.”… Dr. Sandy Chung
THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!
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