The pediatrician continues to serve as a frontline provider addressing patients’ medical and mental health needs, yet COVID-19 is reshaping the way physicians deliver such care. Pediatricians are increasingly faced with the challenge of delivering healthcare, including mental health care, remotely. Given the rapidly evolving literature, we performed a narrative review of the use of telehealth for mental health care for pediatric populations during the COVID-19 pandemic. Areas of focus included 1) pediatric primary care settings, 2) special pediatric populations (e.g., eating disorders, autism), 3) access and engagement in telehealth care, and 4) training opportunities available for mental health providers. Themes that emerged across studies included the importance of meeting patients’ needs (e.g., access to technological resources) to optimize success in using telehealth tools and challenges around provider access to evidence-based tools for use during telehealth. Thus, we offered evidence-based tools (including COVID-19 specific resources) for improving the delivery of mental health care by pediatricians via telehealth. We also reviewed future directions including trials currently underway that will enhance understanding of future telehealth applications for pediatric mental health care.
Copyright © 2021. Published by Elsevier Inc.