Leading medical groups have declared a national emergency in child and adolescent mental health triggered by prolonged isolation, uncertainty and grief during the coronavirus pandemic.
In a joint statement issued Tuesday, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and the Children’s Hospital Association said the coronavirus pandemic worsened an already existing mental health crisis among children and teens.
Inequities resulting from structural racism contributed to disproportionate impacts of the pandemic on children from communities of color, the groups said.
The loss of a loved one has affected children and adolescents more than it has other age groups, research from the American Academy of Pediatrics shows. More than 140,000 children in the United States have lost at least one caregiver since the start of the pandemic, with youth of color disproportionately affected.