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Panama City, FL: Local pediatrician calls for 'school-based mental health services'

Mar 7, 2018, Panama City Beach, FL, NBC7: Bay District Schools leaders directing focus on mental health http://www.wjhg.com/content/news/Bay-District-Schools-leaders-directing-focus-on-mental-health-476182683.html ...Bill Husfelt, Superintendent of Bay District Schools, has said mental health is a priority for school officials and teachers. He recommended increasing the number of mental health specialists for schools. … If referred by a teacher or administrators, students have access to on- or off-site mental health services.... Florida Therapy provides in-school services for Title I schools on a case-by-case basis. PanCare provides behavioral counseling at Rosenwald and C.C. Washington. Students can also be referred to the Life Management Center of Northwest Florida, which is an off-site service. … A local medical professional said she is seeing an increase in mental health incidents. Despite people believing it's simply because people are becoming more aware of mental health concerns, that is not the case. She said it is a true increase. "There's several different reasons, you know, genetics, but also at the same time, the social structure, the structure in the house, social media, the easy access to Internet, all those things are promoting more bullying, more mental health problems," Dr. Rubina Azam, a Board Certified Pediatrician said. … "I think school-based mental health services are vital to decreasing mental health problems in children," Dr. Azam said. She recommends teachers receive training in identifying mental health concerns in children, which would reduce the stigma and need for transportation to outside agencies. …