Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA) received an anonymous donation of $25 million to support the cognitive, emotional, and behavioral health needs of people served by CHLA. The anonymous gift provides CHLA with the capacity not only to sustain but to grow its behavioral health footprint by:
- Expanding access to cognitive, emotional, and behavioral health services across the hospital
- Expanding proactive screening and intervention which will help children and youth avoid hospitalization
- Creating and implementing behavioral health training and education for clinical professionals, both at CHLA and within the CHLA Care Network
- Leveraging technology and research to improve access and efficiency
- Advocating at the local, state and national levels for policies that improve access to behavioral health services for children and adolescents
- Completing implementation of new behavioral health outpatient program, including the construction of a new outpatient behavioral health clinic
Building on its existing services for cognitive, emotional, mental, and behavioral health, the hospital was already in the process of launching a sophisticated set of behavioral health services and made significant headway after the start of the pandemic. The goal has been to ensure that every person referred to CHLA with another primary diagnosis has access to behavioral health to support their overall health and well-being. This has included:
- Launching a first-of-its-kind post-discharge psychiatry clinic that provides appropriate behavioral health care for people who were initially admitted for other diagnoses
- Implementing a help line to assist pediatrician members of the CHLA Care Network with answers and advice regarding how best to support behavioral health needs in the community
- Adding more caregivers including psychiatrists, a psychologist, nurse practitioners, and social workers
- Developing a Virtual Behavioral Health Program that provides tele-psychiatry and virtual counseling plus medication management for people with anxiety, depression, and autism
Since March, CHLA has provided more than 1,000 behavioral health visits for children and youth through these new program additions. CHLA pediatric specialists report increases in anxiety and depression among patients as a direct consequence of social isolation from the pandemic, loss of routine, school closures, as well as the effects of COVID-19-related parental physical, emotional, and economic distress.
Founded in 1901, CHLA is the highest-ranked children’s hospital in California and fifth in the nation on the prestigious U.S. News & World Report “Honor Roll” of best children’s hospitals. U.S. News ranks Children’s Hospital Los Angeles in all 10 specialty categories. Clinical care at the hospital is led by physicians who are faculty members of the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California through an affiliation dating from 1932. The hospital also operates the largest pediatric residency training program at a freestanding children’s hospital in the western United States. The Saban Research Institute of CHLA is home to all basic, translational, clinical, and community research conducted at the hospital, allowing proven discoveries to quickly reach consumers.
This was reported by Children’s Hospital Los Angeles on January 26, 2021.
Contact information: Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, 4650 Sunset Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90027; 323-660-2450; Website: https://www.chla.org/.