Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego, one of the top pediatric healthcare systems on the West Coast, has appointed Dr. Benjamin Maxwell as Division Chief of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry and The Una Davis Family Chair in Behavioral Health.
Dr. Maxwell, who is also an Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at UCSD, will oversee the clinical divisional structure and lead efforts to improve access to mental health care for children and families, especially those from underserved communities.
Facing an Unprecedented Pediatric Mental Health Crisis
Dr. Maxwell’s appointment comes at a critical time when the country is facing an unprecedented pediatric mental health crisis.
According to statistics, one in five adolescents suffer from depression, and the intensifying challenges of being and raising a child in today’s tumultuous environment have only added to this crisis. Dr. Maxwell has made it his personal mission to transform the way we help families overcome these challenges.
Pioneering Approaches to Expand Access to Care
Dr. Maxwell has been an esteemed member of the Rady Children’s and UCSD communities and has held various clinical and leadership roles at both institutions. Under his leadership, the psychiatry division has pioneered approaches to expand access to care and improve clinical outcomes.
One such approach was the opening of the Copley Psychiatric Emergency Department at Rady Children’s, which has improved access to care for children and families in crisis. Additionally, the division has partnered with primary care pediatricians on mental health integration, leading to the development of the nation-leading Primary Care Behavioral Health Integration Program.
Strategies to Address the Global Mental Health Crisis
Dr. Maxwell has also been an advocate for addressing the global mental health crisis affecting children. He has implemented strategies in Ethiopia on early recognition of behavioral health challenges, educational programs for primary care physicians in Jordan to improve their expertise in behavioral health, and mentoring psychiatrists in Saudi Arabia to integrate behavioral health services in primary care settings.
A Leader for Pediatric Mental Health Care
Dr. Maxwell’s appointment as Chief of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry at Rady Children’s is a testament to the significant strides he has made during his time at the institution.
His expertise in psychiatry and neuroscience, combined with his plan to revolutionize how we treat mental illness, make him the ideal leader to drive pediatric mental health care forward not only in the region but nationwide.
In an interview, Dr. Maxwell expressed his determination to turn the tide of the pediatric mental health crisis. “What we are doing now simply isn’t enough,” he said. “It is time for dramatic changes both within the healthcare system and at a societal level.”
Improving Mental Health Care Access for Underserved Communities
As Division Chief of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, Dr. Maxwell will lead efforts to improve access to mental health care for children and families from underserved communities. This is especially critical as studies have shown that communities of color have less access to mental health services, despite a higher prevalence of mental health challenges.
Dr. Maxwell’s appointment will bring hope to these communities as he is committed to ensuring that everyone has access to quality mental health care.
Dr. Benjamin Maxwell’s appointment as Chief of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry at Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego is a significant step towards improving mental health care for children and families, particularly those from underserved communities. His expertise and commitment to revolutionizing how we treat mental illness make him the ideal leader to drive pediatric mental health care forward.
This appointment comes at a critical time when the country is facing an unprecedented pediatric mental health crisis. Dr. Maxwell’s appointment brings hope to these communities and highlights the need for everyone to have access to quality mental health care.
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