NJ Pediatric Psychiatry Collaborative (NJPPC)

Make a Difference
Help More Children Get Access to Mental Health Care! 

Children and adolescents are experiencing increased emotional distress in response to current events. Early mental health intervention is crucial. However, many families today are finding it difficult to access care. As a result, symptoms worsen, leading to poor outcomes and more intense and expensive treatment. This includes increased rates of school dropout, substance use, involvement in the juvenile justice system and increased suicide.

Our communities are in crisis. We need to fundamentally change the way we address patient care. As psychiatrists, we are in a unique position to lead the discussion on the transformation of healthcare delivery. Research supports the collaborative care model as a method of improving access to care.

The New Jersey Psychiatric Association (NJPA) has represented its members as a key stakeholder in bringing the NJ Pediatric Psychiatry Collaborative (NJPPC), a patient and family-centered care model, to New Jersey. The research indicates that collaborative care works, but only if psychiatrists are an integral part of this team-based approach. The NJPA now invites its members to join the initiative.

Learn more about NJPA’s involvement


Introducing the NJ Pediatric Psychiatry Collaborative

The NJPPC is a state funded grant program where Hackensack Meridian Health, Cooper University Health Care, and the Atlantic Health System partner to provide support, evaluations, and referrals for children with behavioral and emotional health issues. The program is available for children up to age 18 or older if the patient is still seeing their pediatrician who is registered with the NJPPC.

Services are regionalized through statewide hubs.

The NJPPC provides quick access to psychiatric consultation and facilitates referrals for accessing ongoing behavioral health care. Pediatricians are encouraged to integrate behavioral health resources into their practices and work with child and adolescent psychiatrists as well as other behavioral health providers.

Share information about NJPPC with your patients (available for download in English and Spanish)

How the NJ Pediatric Psychiatry Collaborative Works

The NJPPC is a regionalized system of psychiatric and behavioral consultation teams to assist pediatricians in managing their patient’s mental health needs. It brings pediatricians into the fold in a collaborative partnership with child and adolescent psychiatrists to broaden children’s access to evidence-based mental health care. The NJPPC is designed to educate pediatricians on mental health care, help them screen for and identify mental health concerns, and get timely access to a consultation with a child and adolescent psychiatrist.

The NJPPC gives more patients access to mental health care sooner. It offers a triaged approach to delivering care based on the severity of the child’s needs. Participating pediatricians can-

  1. Consult with the NJPPC child and adolescent psychiatrist and behavioral health staff
  2. Refer patients to the NJPPC staff for intake and referral to services in their community
  3. Access psychiatry evaluation services via telehealth

Patient Eligible patients include children, adolescents, and young adults age 18 or older if they remain under the care of NJPPC-registered pediatricians. Child and adolescent patients, accompanied by an adult caregiver, can go in person to any of the 9 hub locations or can conduct a telehealth visit from either their home or from their pediatrician’s office. The evaluation visit is available at the location that is clinically appropriate for the patient while reducing access-to-care barriers (e.g. transportation – access to/cost of).
Pediatrician Pediatricians enrolled in the NJPPC conduct universal mental/ behavioral health & substance use screening. If a mental/ behavioral health or substance use concern is identified, pediatricians may share information on the NJPPC with the family/patient and obtain consent to refer the family to the NJPPC. The pediatrician may also call the NJPPC Hub staff or child and adolescent psychiatrist for a consult.
Clinical Navigator Clinical Navigators, including LCSWs, LSWs, LPCs, LACs, and psychologists are located in one of nine regionalized NJPPC hubs across NJ and provide the following support:
  • Conduct telephonic biopsychosocial assessments with the patient and family
  • Provide referral and linkage to services for the patient
  • Provide consultation to NJPPC pediatricians
  • Coordinate with NJPPC child and adolescent psychiatrists
Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist Board certified/ board eligible child and adolescent psychiatrists are in one of the nine regionalized NJPPC hubs across NJ and provide the following support:
  • Review NJPPC consults with the clinical navigator
  • Consult with the pediatrician regarding diagnosis and treatment recommendations, including medication management
  • Conduct a one-time evaluation of the patient
  • Your Role is Crucial. Get Involved Now!

    Become a part of the community that’s making a marked difference in children’s mental health. What can you do?

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