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Subject: LCSH

School health services, School mental health services,




The purpose of this paper is to present systems of care as an example of how counseling psychology and public health overlap with regards to prevention and intervention approaches for children's mental health. A framework for prevention is presented as is the state of children's mental health promotion, with a particular focus on ecological and systemic approaches to children's mental health and how these approaches cut across multiple perspectives. Systems of care are highlighted as an example of the congruence of prevention and ecological or systemic approaches to address the mental health promotion of children and their families, with the potential to impact at the universal, selective, and indicated levels of risk. Results from a longitudinal outcome study of a school-based system of care are presented to exemplify the positive outcomes experienced by children. An increase in the awareness and implementation of systems of care across mental health perspectives is recommended, along with continued research from the public health and counseling psychology communities focused on which prevention and intervention services within systems of care work, why they work, and how they can be improved upon.


Posted with permission. A Publication of Prevention Section in Division 17 of American Psychological Association.

Publisher Citation

Whitson, Melissa L., Bernard, Stanley & Kaufman, Joy. Systems of Care and the Prevention of Mental Health Problems for Children and their Families: Integrating Counseling Psychology and Public Health Perspectives. Prevention in Counseling and Psychology 2009 Nov; 3(1):3-9

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Psychology Commons