Health Professional News

Children’s Minnesota partners with Washburn Center for Children to improve mental health care access

Children’s Minnesota is proud to announce a partnership with community-based mental health provider, Washburn Center for Children, to improve mental health care access for kids and teens and meet the community-wide need for more pediatric mental health care. Children’s Minnesota will partner with an acute response therapist from Washburn Center for Children, whose role is to work directly with Children’s Minnesota patients referred through our emergency departments and future mental health inpatient unit in St. Paul. This position will support more than 100 kids annually and transition them to less intensive services, and ensure they have the resources needed to be successful.

“Building community partnerships with organizations like Washburn Center for Children strengthens our community-wide approach to meet the mental health needs of kids and teens,” said Jamie Winter, director of mental health services at Children’s Minnesota. “We are confident that this partnership will improve outcomes for kids and make sure they get the right level of care when they need it.”

Beth Dahline, director of operations at Washburn Center for Children, said of the partnership:

“We are delighted to partner with Children’s Minnesota as we expand and strengthen this unique and innovative care model so we can reach more kids who are in crisis. When we come together, we will improve access and mental health care for children and families and the impact will reach beyond those served to family/caregiver networks, neighborhoods and communities. Our specialized acute response therapist, in collaboration with hospital teams, creates stability for families and results in fewer hospital re-admissions or less time in an inpatient unit for children.”

As The Kid Experts™, Children’s Minnesota is committed to helping meet the growing needs for accessible mental health care for children and teens with a long-term vision to expand pediatric mental health care in the region. Children’s Minnesota has made investments in providing more intensive mental health care with the opening of our new mental health day program in Lakeville in June 2021. Later this year, we are opening our first inpatient mental health unit at the St. Paul campus, which is expected to help more than 1,000 kids annually.

Alexandra Rothstein