Provider News

April Mental Health Roundup

April 3, 2024

This new section of Provider News will offer monthly updates on news and resources related to Mental and Behavioral Health, with links to learn more.

Dr. Ray Hsiao Appointed Senior Medical Director, Mental and Behavioral Health Services

Dr. Ray Hsiao has been appointed senior medical director, Mental and Behavioral Health Services. In this new role, Hsiao will oversee all clinical components of Seattle Children’s inpatient and outpatient mental and behavioral health services. This leadership role is part of Seattle Children’s continued efforts to organize and expand services to best meet the increased needs of the community, medical colleagues and referring providers. 
As of February 2024, Dr. Larry Wissow stepped down as director of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine. He continues as a professor in the Department of Psychiatry and will continue to serve as vice-chair for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the University of Washington until July 1, when Hsiao will assume that position on an interim basis.

For more information, check out our Mental Health Resources for Community Providers or reach out to your dedicated Physician Liaison if you would like to schedule a meet and greet with Dr. Hsiao. 

Seattle Children’s Psychiatric Urgent Care Clinic to Open Late Summer 2024

We are excited to share plans to open Seattle Children’s Psychiatric Urgent Care Clinic later this year. The clinic will be located at Seattle Children’s Magnuson Clinic and will be a critical component to helping meet the increasingly high demand for youth mental and behavioral health services. Psychiatric Urgent Care will provide in-person and virtual mental and behavioral health assessment and intervention for Washington youth (ages 4 to 17) in crisis who do not need emergency medical care. We look forward to sharing more information in the months ahead. 

Introducing the Mental Health Hospital Consultation Service

Seattle Children’s Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine Clinic has launched a Mental Health Hospital Consultation Service. The new service will provide consultation and resource assistance to colleagues at hospitals in need of support for their youth mental health patients. This service is for clinicians whose patients are boarding in the Emergency Department or on medical floors with a primary presentation of mental health concerns. Our service aims to reduce length of stays and enhance the quality of care by offering general education and suggestions and connecting clinicians with community-based resources. Additionally, we provide behavior support strategies to assist care teams in managing youth with behavioral challenges during their hospital stay.

How to use the service: 

  • Call our team at 206-987-0999 or email We are available 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, excluding holidays. See flyer for details.
  • We also will be hosting our first Provider Café/Office Hours on Thursday, April 25, 1 to 2 p.m. where providers can meet our team and learn more about our services. Email us for more information.  

New PSA Encourages Parents to “Ask the Question”

Many parents are unaware that their kids are having suicidal thoughts and are hesitant to ask their child for fear that it will “plant” the idea. Research has shown that asking about suicide does not give someone the idea to die by suicide and it does not increase their risk of suicide. In fact, talking about suicide creates a safe space for children and teens to get information, and asking directly about suicide can be the difference between life and death. 
A new public service announcement from Seattle Children’s takes a novel approach to addressing this dilemma in the form of a simple, low-fi AV presentation to adults, narrated by an earnest, smart, funny young person. The PSA will run across the Washington, Alaska, Montana and Idaho region in both English and Spanish.

Learn more by visiting our Ask the Question webpage, viewing the PSA, learning more about our Suicide Prevention Program and visiting our Mental Health Resource Hub.

Behavior and Attention Management Programs: Shorter Wait Times for Consultation Visit 

Seattle Children's Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine Behavior and Attention Management Program offers a wide range of integrated services for youth ages 5 to 15 years with disruptive behaviors or attention problems. Historically, wait times for an initial consultation visit ranged from 6 to 12 months. Now due to efforts to increase capacity, patients are being scheduled within 2 to 4 months for their initial consultation visit. 

Learn more about the program, conditions treated, treatments and services available, and how to refer a patient.

Mental Health Services for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Children and Their Families: Growing Capacity

Seattle Children’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine Deaf/Hard of Hearing Therapy Program provides mental health assessment and treatment services for Deaf and Hard of Hearing (DHH) children, adolescents, and their families. The team includes mental health specialists, all of whom are fluent in American Sign Language. The DHH Therapy Program continues to grow and has capacity. Please consider referring individuals who may benefit from these services.
Learn more by reviewing the program flyer; visiting our refer a patient page; or contact the program coordinator directly at, via phone at 206-884-8099, or video phone at 360-562-0977.