Screening for psychiatric disorders: a key to psychiatrys integration with the primary care healthcare system

Author(s): Kelly J Kelleher, William P Gardner

Advocates of universal screening for child psychiatric disorders in primary care overestimate the likelihood that screening programs will deliver mental health care to children with mental health needs. We argue that screening is only effective when carried out by well-trained primary care teams, supported by care co-ordination systems, and when closely linked to a mental health specialty service with resources to handle the patient volume and a commitment to co-ordinating treatment with primary care.


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