The health and behavioral health fields must recognize that childhood poverty is a social co-morbidity and a critical public health issue. To this end, providers should actively support causes that focus on:
- Increasing research and education to better define the extent of childhood poverty and establish more accurate estimates of prevalence and incidence of ACEs;
- Developing child population-specific networks of care that include school-based behavioral health, home and community based services (HCBS), wellness programs, and social services care coordination;
- Consolidating funding across health, behavioral health, and social programs to coordinate care; and
- Closely reviewing the use of psychotropic medications in children to inform social policies, legislation, and regulations.
Patrick Gauthier is the director of AHP Healthcare Solutions.