Pilot Program Expands Kids' Access to Mental and Behavioral Health Care in Benton, Franklin Counties
When Dr. Robert Hilt was working as a pediatrician in Kitsap County, he would sometimes want to consult with a child psychiatrist about a patient but never successfully got in touch with one despite many attempts to do so. Now a child psychiatrist himself, he helped create a program at Seattle Children’s Hospital that addresses that issue. The Partnership Access Line, or PAL, is a telephone-based mental health consultation system for primary care providers in Washington and Wyoming which has been successful. And now Hilt and his colleagues are trying an expansion with the pilot program under way in Benton and Franklin counties called PAL Plus. The program aims to increase access to mental and behavioral health treatment for underserved and low-income children.
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