Kids’ Minds Matter Goal

Our community has acknowledged that we have a children’s mental health epidemic in our country, and especially in our region. When left untreated, these conditions impact our youth well into their adult years.

We are focused on decreasing voluntary and involuntary pediatric psychiatric hospitalizations by focusing on three critical areas:

1

Improving access to care

2

Expanding community engagement and education to reduce prejudice and promote early detection

3

Building capacity in the region through collaboration and partnerships to identity gaps in behavioral health care, enhance existing services and develop programs to better meet the needs of our community.

Early intervention is critical to ensuring better outcomes for children with mental health challenges. Building a multi-faceted system will improve access to care, so we can reduce the number of Baker Acts by 35-40%.

Serena's Story

Serena’s Story

Honor student and athlete, Serena, experienced a traumatic event as a teenager that lead to anxiety and depression. Her family says there was no place for her to go as a minor to get the specialized care she needed, and she had to wait until she turned 18 to receive proper care. Join us as we advocate to help teens like Serena, receive the mental health care they need, when they need it most.

Our strategic next steps include:

  • Improve outpatient access and recruiting providers
  • Extend outpatient hours, including evenings and weekends
  • Add a Case Management Department
  • Add a Testing Center to provide pediatric depression, anxiety and suicide screenings
  • Add a Crisis Call Triage Center for adults and children
  • Integrate mental health services with primary care
  • Develop in-home therapy team
  • Add Crisis Stabilization Unit
  • Add Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOP) to decrease emergency commitments
  • And more
  • Improve outpatient access and recruiting providers
  • Extend outpatient hours, including evenings and weekends
  • Add a Case Management Department
  • Add a Testing Center to provide pediatric depression, anxiety and suicide screenings
  • Add a Crisis Call Triage Center for adults and children
  • Integrate mental health services with primary care
  • Develop in-home therapy team
  • Add Crisis Stabilization Unit
  • Add Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOP) to decrease emergency commitments
  • And more

Interested in supporting our mission to increase access to pediatric mental and behavioral health care in our region?

Learn More
Paul Simeone, Ph.D.

Meet Paul Simeone, Ph.D.
VP/ Medical Director of Behavioral Health at Lee Health

In 2018, Dr. Paul Simeone was recruited from Boston, where he was on the faculty at Harvard Medical School’s Dept. of Psychiatry. He is a practicing psychologist with more than 30 years of experience in teaching, leadership and program development and improvement. In his current role, he is leading the strategic vision for mental and behavioral health care in Southwest Florida