Mental Health Blog

Don’t panic about panic attacks

“The impairment from a panic attack doesn’t come from the episode itself,” said REACH faculty member James Wallace, MD. “It comes from the patient’s and family’s reaction.”


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Treating pediatric trauma

“The biggest predictor of having something bad happen to you is having had something bad happen to you in the past,” said Brooks Keeshin, MD. Dr. Keeshin, a child abuse pediatrician and child psychiatrist at the University of Utah, co-developed the new REACH Institute course Addressing Trauma in Pediatric Primary Care.  At least 66% of…


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Helping patients deal with school shooter anxiety

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 92% of public schools had formal active shooter plans in 2016, and 96% conducted lockdown drills. These measures are intended to keep children safe, but they may do as much harm as good. The title of a September 4 New York Times article sums it up: “When Active Shooter Drills Scare the Children They Hope to Protect.” We asked REACH faculty member Jasmine Reese, MD, MPH, about how students react to active shooter drills and what pediatric primary care providers (PCPs) can do. Dr. Reese is Director of the Adolescent and Young Adult Specialty Clinic at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg, Florida. “We have yet to see data on whether these drills are causing more anxiety and other mental health issues among students,” said Dr. Reese. “But it seems clear in practice that they can either cause anxiety and depression or exacerbate existing issues.”


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How Pediatric Professionals Can Use Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to Address Anxiety

“Pediatric primary care providers can have a big impact on child mental health simply because we see children early and often,” said Dana Kornfeld, MD, REACH board member and associate clinical professor of pediatrics at George Washington School of Medicine. Dr. Kornfeld, who practices at Pediatric Care Center in Bethesda, MD, endorses the use of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) techniques in primary care to nip potentially crippling anxiety in the bud.


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“REACH offered a safe environment to learn and share in It was, and continues to be, a supportive, invigorating process! It was motivating and has increased my confidence in assessment, diagnosis of mental health cases in my day to day life and practice.”

Dayna Leavens, CPNP, MSN
Twin Falls, ID