Washington’s Mental Health Referral Service for Children and Teens
Washington’s Mental Health Referral Service for Children and Teens connects patients and families with evidence-supported outpatient mental health services in their community. This free, telephone-based referral service is funded by Washington Healthcare Authority and operated by Seattle Children’s.
The Mental Health Referral Service will provide thorough mental health referrals for children and teens 17 and younger from across Washington.
How do families access Washington’s Mental Health Referral Service for Children and Teens?
- Families can call 833-303-5437, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Pacific time, to connect with a referral specialist.
- We will ask your patient for information including their mental health needs, location and health insurance plan.
What can patients and families expect?
- A referral specialist will call and email the family with information on one or two providers or agencies that meet their needs and have openings. Since starting the program in April 2019, we have received a high number of requests and currently have a queue. Our two referral specialists will call families back as soon as possible.
- A few weeks after providing the referrals, a referral specialist will contact the family to see if they were able to make an appointment and ask if additional resources are needed.
- If no appointment has been made, we will try to address any barriers or link the family to another provider.
For Primary Care Providers
- As part of your PAL consultation call, you can request that we connect your patient with mental health providers in their local area who can meet their needs. We will ask about your patient’s needs, location and health insurance plan.
- A request will be sent to Washington's Mental Health Referral Service for Children and Teens. A referral specialist will then reach out to the family.
- Referral information provided to your patient will also be faxed to you.
If You Are Not a Primary Care Provider
If you’re not a PCP, please have the family call the Washington Mental Health Referral Service for Children and Teens directly at 833-303-5437.
About Washington's Mental Health Referral Service for Children and Teens
Washington’s Mental Health Referral Service keeps a database of licensed mental health outpatient providers that we update daily. Information comes from health plan panels of providers and outreach calls we make. See information for mental health providers who would like to be added to the database.
The database includes details on:
- If the provider has openings for new patients
- Provider’s mental health specialties and types of treatment offered
- Which health insurance or state programs the provider accepts
A goal of the service is to match families with an evidence-supported practice when possible. These therapies include:
- Addiction treatment (substances/internet/gaming)
- Applied behavioral analysis (ABA)
- Behavioral therapy
- Cognitive behavioral intervention for tics and habit reversal therapy
- Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
- Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
- Eating disorder treatment
- Exposure and response prevention therapy for obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Infant/parent dyad therapy
- Insight-oriented therapy
- Parent management training
- Telemental health
- Trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy
No. Seattle Children’s operates the Mental Health Referral Service for Washington state. The service is for children and teens from across Washington who need outpatient mental health services in their local communities. Your patient does not need to be seen at Seattle Children’s.