A National Institutes of Health Approach for Advancing Research to Improve Youth Mental Health and Reduce Disparities

The work described herein articulates a way forward for the NIH to continue to improve youth mental health and to reduce YMHD through supporting rigorous, impactful research. However, the urgency of the youth mental health crisis and YMHD is so pressing that many NIH ICOs have already begun this important work, particularly through supporting research. As exemplified by the NIMH Strategic Framework, which was developed to be a living document, the scourge of YMHD amidst the broader youth mental health crisis in the United States constitutes a clear call to action requiring an agile, collaborative response. However, the call sounds far beyond the NIH. Researchers and scientists addressing YMHD come from myriad disciplines, including but not limited to psychiatry, psychology, pediatrics, social work, public health, health services, economics, public policy, nursing, education, and law. To effectively address YMHD, the emerging approach described requires that researchers and scientists collaborate with funders, clinicians, educators, caregivers and families, policy makers, payors, and youth themselves where youth live, learn, work and play, and receive health care and social services. This call to action requires collective expertise and effort to develop and implement innovative policies, programs, and practices—informed by research—to effectively address the drivers and social determinants of YMHD and to promote health equity for all youth.

File Type: pdf
Categories: Policy Tool, Resource Library
Tags: Data Collection and Analysis, Health & Mental Health, Racial and Ethnic Disparities, Structural Racism, Youth & Families, Youth Defense Research Priorities