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THROUGH PHYSICIAN-TO-PHYSICIAN PROGRAM
With mental health problems in youth a growing concern worldwide, here, in Southern Nevada, the lack of mental health care for children and teens is particularly alarming for Dr. Lisa Durette, assistant professor at the Kirk Kerkorian School of Medicine at UNLV Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health, who also serves as director of the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Fellowship.
According to Dr. Durette, Nevada consistently ranks last for quality of mental health services, especially for youth. “In Nevada, we only have six child and adolescent psychiatrists per 100,000 kids as compared to a national average of 14,’ said Dr. Durette. “It’s no wonder our kids and teens who need mental health services are suffering.”
In 2020, Dr. Durette helped to establish the Pediatric Access Line (PAL), a statewide child psychiatry access program that builds capacity for mental health diagnoses and treatments for a number of conditions, including but not limited to Attention Deficit Disorder, learning disabilities, anxiety, self-destructive behaviors, eating disorders, and autism.
The program is funded by a mental health block grant from the Nevada Department of Public and Behavioral Health and administered by Chicanos por la Causa (CPLC) Nevada in partnership with the Kirk Kerkorian School of Medicine at UNLV and the Center for Community Solutions. Since the program started, more than 250 consultations have been completed for Nevada families.
How does it work? PAL provides pediatricians and general practitioners statewide with access to a cadre of child and adolescent psychiatrists via tele-video consultations who review patient cases and weigh in with diagnoses and suggested treatments.
Not to be confused with a crisis line that can be used by general consumers and patients, PAL provides physician to physician services, giving pediatricians and primary care providers access to highly specialized psychiatric professionals who help refine diagnoses and recommend evidence-based treatments for better outcomes.
For children, teens and families who benefit from this service, there is no additional charge for their doctors to access this expertise on their behalf.
For information, visit www.center4cs.org, or call 702-559-4528.
Photo: Dr. Lisa Durette, assistant professor at the Kirk Kerkorian School of Medicine at UNLV Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health and director of the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry FellowshipBack to All