New guideline aims to tackle teen depression - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

New guideline aims to tackle teen depression

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The PATCH Center The PATCH Center
Hannibal High School Hannibal High School
HANNIBAL, Mo. (WGEM) -

A new guideline is asking pediatricians to routinely look for signs of depression by the American Academy of Pediatrics. It is the first update to guidelines in 10 years according to an article published on their website.

It is meant to be the first step toward referring teens with signs of depression to a specialist. Many often go undiagnosed and untreated, sometimes due to lack of access according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.

The PATCH Center in Hannibal offers primary care and counseling to Hannibal Public School students. Director of Children Mental Health Services Holly Griffin told WGEM making resources available can make a difference in treating depression.

"Once you get them engaged, then they open up, you can actually do some excellent work with them. I think with pediatrics that is a great place to start," Griffin said.

Hannibal Public Schools Superintendent Susan Johnson wants families to utilize the center to help fight against mental illness among students. 

"Early identification can make or break a student, you know it's just like any kind of, illness and mental illness being no different," she said. "It's the sigma that goes along with mental health , and you know I don't think it needs to be that way."

To read more on the updated guidelines involving teen depression click here.

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