Mental and Behavioral Health

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Approximately 1 in 5 children have a mental health condition, but there is a national shortage of providers to care for them.

Learn how “population health” strategies can support these children.

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Buckeye Ranch Facility Groundbreaking. Photographer: Cassandra Swiatek

A Partnership To Fill a Gap in Pediatric Residential Behavioral Health Care

Nearly 140 Ohio children must receive residential psychiatric care outside of the state each day because of a lack of local facilities. The Buckeye Ranch and Nationwide Children’s Hospital, with the help of the Ohio Department of Medicaid’s OhioRISE program, have broken ground on a new facility to help address that need.

A mom and daughter are seated next to each other on a couch, looking at a laptop screen.

A Virtual Program to Aid Families of Children With Autism

For years, Project ECHO has allowed Nationwide Children’s experts to virtually educate health care providers throughout Ohio. Now, the hospital is using the same model to support families of children with autism throughout the United States.

A group of individuals meet at the Big Lots Behavioral Health Pavilion at Nationwide Children's Hospital

Addressing the Growing Concern of Doctor Burnout

Doctors experience burnout and other mental health concerns at a higher rate than many other professions. A recent grant from the federal Health Resources and Services Administration is helping Nationwide Children’s Hospital and its collaborators around the country develop interventions to help.

A child and adult are walking and holding hands. The child is wearing a sweater.

Addressing the Rising Rate of Young Child Suicide

Suicide rates among children 5 to 11 years of age increased nearly 15% annually between 2012 and 2017. But there’s limited research that could lead to suicide prevention strategies in these young children. A recent study from the Center for Suicide Prevention and Research at Nationwide Children’s Hospital has helped to address that gap.

A teenage girl has her back to the camera. She's wearing a back pack and is walking on a path in a tree-lined public area.

Behavioral and Mental Health Care in Schools

Nationwide Children’s School-Based Behavioral Health Services is providing high-quality trauma-informed and culturally responsive behavioral and mental health care where young people are – at school.

A preview of the Bloom platform on a computer, tablet and phone.

Bloom: Helping Working Parents Improve Children’s Mental Health

Many working parents report that their children’s mental health has an impact in the workplace. So the On Our Sleeves® Movement For Children’s Mental Health has developed Bloom, a digital curriculum employers can offer their employees with resources to help parents support their children’s mental and behavioral well-being.

Exterior image of the Big Lots Behavioral Health Pavilion

COVID-19 and the Compounding Children’s Mental Health Crisis

David Axelson, MD, chief of Behavioral Health at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, writes that COVID-19 has had a negative impact on an already existing pediatric mental health crisis. . .but a new national focus on the issue is a step in the right direction.

The Center for Family Safety and Healing Logo

Expanding Mental Health Care for Young Children Who Have Experienced Trauma

With the help of a new $2 million grant, The Center for Family Safety and Healing at Nationwide Children’s is partnering with community organizations in Franklin and Licking counties to improve access to care for children and families who have experienced trauma. Learn how the partnership is already working in the community.

Dr. Whitney Raglin Bignall

Expanding Mental Health Care in the Black Community

“Only about 5% of practicing psychologists are Black, and that number is even lower when it comes to those who specialize in pediatric care,” notes The Columbus Dispatch, in exploring the many reasons why some Black people both do not receive and do not seek out mental health care.

Logo for the Appalachian Children Coalition

Expanding the Appalachian Region’s Access to Mental Health Care

This relatively new partnership has already made a big impact in an underserved region of Ohio, facilitating millions of dollars in investment for children. And it’s planning to grow.

A nursing employee is seated in a library, with a laptop in front of her. A coworker stands behind her, smiling and looking at the laptop screen.

Free Professional Behavioral Health Education on Demand

Nationwide Children’s whole-child approach to pediatric care extends beyond just those in their community. Through the Behavioral Health Learning Library, pediatric providers from across the state can access evidence-based pediatric mental and behavioral health assessments and treatments.

David Axelson

Leveraging a Limited Pediatric Mental Health Workforce

Dr. Axelson explains a “system of care” concept that has developed at Nationwide Children’s, where psychiatrists lead multidisciplinary teams of mental health professionals and work with community primary care providers to reach underserved areas.

A concerned teen girl sits on the couch, solemnly looking toward the window

New Rapid Response Services for Young People in Mental Health Crisis

Nationwide Children’s new Mobile Response Stabilization Services works to send an expert team to the location of crisis – helping families avoid a trip to the emergency department.

Teenage Boy Sitting Outdoors

New School-Based Initiative is Increasing Mental Health Care Access in Southeastern Ohio

A partnership with the Cardinal Health Foundation is allowing Nationwide Children’s Hospital to implement suicide prevention programs in schools in Stark and Athens Counties, train primary care providers to diagnose and manage children’s mental health conditions and develop integrated models of care.

Close up of a smiling elementary aged girl with curly hair styled in two ponytails

PAX Good Behavior Game

Thanks to the implementation of an innovative program, many central and southeastern Ohio elementary schools have seen disruptive classroom behavior decrease by 30-36%. Learn how the PAX Good Behavior Game is making a difference.

Nationwide Children's Hospital Patient Stock Photo

Pediatric Vital Signs

Nationwide Children’s Hospital and a number of community partners launched the first effort of its kind in the United States to measure and improve the health of every child: Pediatric Vital Signs.

Two preschool aged boys, smiling, playing on a playground

Preschool for Children Who Have Experienced Trauma

Nationwide Children’s has partnered with Head Start in Franklin County to launch a Therapeutic Interagency Preschool designed to provide educational, developmental and mental health support services to preschoolers who have experienced severe abuse or neglect.

A preschool-aged girl and boy are eating lunch at a table

Preschoolers Are Being Expelled at an Alarming Rate

Preschoolers are expelled 3x more often than other school children. The Ohio Preschool Expulsion Prevention Partnership is a free, statewide program that can send a consultant on-site, anywhere in Ohio, to help young children stay in their programs.

Project ECHO and BH-TIPS

Project ECHO and BH-Tips

Project ECHO (Extension for Community Healthcare Outcomes) is a learning collaborative that uses a hub-and-spokes model for case-based group education. A multidisciplinary team of behavioral health and primary care professionals at Nationwide Children’s are the hub, and community providers are the spokes.

Project SEARCH participant, wearing a mask, standing near a wall of windows

Helping Students With Developmental Disabilities Thrive in the Workplace

Project SEARCH at Nationwide Children’s Hospital is helping train high school seniors with developmental disabilities for jobs – including positions at the hospital. Learn how a partnership with the Educational Service Center of Central Ohio, Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities and The Alpha Group is making it possible.

Arielle Sheftall, PhD, in a Nationwide Children's office building

Responding to the Crisis of Black Youth Suicide

Research over the last decade has shown a troubling increase in suicidal thoughts and attempts among young Black people. But little research exists on the “how” and “why” of suicide in Black youth.

Teenage boy is wearing a backpack and walking down a hallway

SOS Signs of Suicide®: An Approved Prevention Program for Ohio Schools

Schools across Ohio will soon be required to provide approved, evidence-based instruction in suicide awareness and prevention. Learn how one such prevention program, SOS Signs of Suicide®, is having a positive impact in more than 188 schools.

Two kids sitting and hugging each other from the side

Startling Research on Youth Suicide Prompts National Conversations

A first-of-its-kind study on Black youth suicide from Nationwide Children’s Hospital has drawn national attention to this growing problem and is now helping inform federal discussion about suicide prevention.

This graphic shows three mobile app screenshots, including a custom avatar.

Teen Suicide Prevention through a New Interactive Online Program

In the midst of a pediatric mental health crisis, Be Present Ohio in partnership with Nationwide Children’s Hospital has created Be Present Ohio: The Online Experience (BPO:XP), a suicide prevention program for teens that provides life-saving suicide prevention content in engaging online modules.

Arial view of rendered buildings

The Buckeye Ranch and Nationwide Children’s Hospital Partnering on New Facility

Two central Ohio leaders in mental health care are coming together to build a new 48-bed residential treatment facility. This state-of-the-art facility, expected to break ground this spring, will serve youth who are transitioning from psychiatric hospital settings.

A mom embraces her young baby in her arms as she kisses its forehead

The Social Needs of Mothers With Postpartum Depression

In a recent study, researchers from Nationwide Children’s found that self-reported social needs like food insecurity, housing instability, difficulty paying utilities or lack of transportation to medical appointments were significantly associated with postpartum depression.

US Surgeon General speaks on stage with Ariana Hoet and Ann Fisher

The Surgeon General’s 3 Crucial Youth Mental Health Stats

On Oct. 18, U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek H. Murthy visited Nationwide Children’s Hospital to discuss the pediatric mental health crisis and learn about the On Our Sleeves movement.

Side profile of a teenager, looking solemn

The Higher Mortality Rate of Previously Incarcerated Youth

A recent study from Nationwide Children’s found that young people who were previously incarcerated in the juvenile legal system are nearly 6x more likely than the general population to experience early mortality. Researchers say that better supporting youths in the reentry process may help.

Elementary age boy with hands resting behind his head.

The Surprising Impact of Child Mental Health on the Workforce

A new study from On Our Sleeves, powered by behavioral health experts at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, finds many parents' work performance and productivity are being impacted by their kids’ mental health.

An older elementary/middle school-aged boy is wearing a backpack and walking toward a school's entrance. His back is facing the camera.

What Experts Know About Youth Suicide Prevention

Experts from Nationwide Children’s Center for Suicide Prevention and Research have helped create a free book exploring the most pressing issues in suicide prevention. Learn how you can download your own copy.

Learn More About Our Programs

Teenage Boy Sitting Outdoors

Behavioral Health

Big Lots Behavioral Health Services at Nationwide Children's Hospital addresses the needs of children and adolescents experiencing emotional, behavioral or developmental problems.

Adult typing on a keyboard with stethoscope sitting on the desk top nearby

BH-TIPS Video Consult for Providers

Ohio community-based primary care providers can receive provider-to-provider consultation with our psychiatrists through virtual appointments.

Big Lots Behavioral Health Pavilion

Helping Kids in Crisis

The Big Lots Behavioral Health Pavilion is America’s largest center dedicated exclusively to child and adolescent behavioral and mental health on a pediatric medical campus.

Center for Suicide Prevention and Research

The Center for Suicide Prevention and Research (CSPR) at Nationwide Children's Hospital was created to address the growing problem of suicide among youth in central Ohio.