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Advocates Seek To Improve Mental Health Care In Jacksonville

Wiki Media Commons & WJCT News

There’s no widespread system of care for mental health patients in Florida.

That’s particularly true of the mental health needs of children, youth, and young adults who have experienced trauma, as well as their families.

That’s why advocates in Jacksonville are working to create a system of care to reach out to kids in need of mental health services.

“One of the things we found was that we needed more clinical competency with our physicians. So we brought in training for trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy. We brought in infant mental health training, and developed youth and family run organizations to be able to provide mental health support,” said Vicki Waytowich  with the Partnership for Child Health.

Related: Listen to the full interview with Waytowich on the First Coast Connect podcast

Waytowich said groups are collaborating on a new system of care for LGBTQ youth in this area.

You can learn more at and at Mental Health America, which is marking Mental Health Month. 

Melissa Ross can be reached at, 904-358-6382 or on Twitter at @MelissainJax.

Photo used under Creative Commons license.

Melissa Ross joined WJCT in 2009 with 20 years of experience in broadcasting, including stints in Cincinnati, Chicago, Orlando and Jacksonville. During her career as a television and radio news anchor and reporter, Melissa has won four regional Emmys for news and feature reporting.