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There is a mental health crisis running rampant worldwide. The topic has been avoided and/or overlooked for so long, it is due time the appropriate attention is given to the mental health status of us all.

Mental health issues are particularly worrisome among young children. In our society, many children are finding themselves in a position of taking their own lives way too often. Because of this, medical professionals right here in Ohio are looking lead the way to change that.

Nationwide Children’s Hospital has undergone major renovations over the last few years and they have yet to slow up. The hospital is now about to open a new building dedicated strictly to treating children with mental health issues.

According to expert reports, 15% of high school students have had thoughts of suicide and sadly the number of deaths are on the rise. The new mental health building plans to offer different ways to combat this rising problem.

The Chief of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health, Dr. David Axelson, said, “Last year, we had over 5,500 kids come to Nationwide Children’s Hospital emergency room with a serious behavioral health condition.”

That alarming number is a 400% increase from youth mental health status 10 years ago and is just a small reflection of the climate nationwide. Throughout the country the numbers are on an upward trend as well.

Because of these trends, Nationwide Children’s Hospital was inspired to open the Big Lots Behavioral Health Pavilion! Thanks to a huge gift of $50 million donated by Big Lots and their Foundation, America’s largest behavioral health treatment and research center will reside right in our backyard.

“Central Ohio is on the cutting edge of really trying to address this pediatric mental health crisis,” Axelson continues.

The new Behavioral Health Pavillion will allow children to find help and hope addressing suicidal thoughts, anxiety, and depression. There will also be areas dedicated to autism and neurodevelopment disorders.

When a child struggles with mental health, it impacts their development, and a misunderstood child becomes a misunderstood adult. So with that in mind, it is best for behaviors to be addressed by doctors sooner, than later.

The process of diagnosing a problem can be very difficult. There is no blood test or brain scan. With at home factors, pressures at school and socially, it can be a challenge to discover the cause of any mental health issues.

According to Dr. Axelson, “…the rate of death by suicide has increased dramatically over the past 10 years in kids ages 10 to 19. It’s now the second leading cause of death.”

What is absolutely loud and clear, is the desperate need for help for our youth. This pavilion is offering hope to pave the way for the nation and keep our kids safe.

If you are interested in visiting the Big Lots Pavilion for Behavioral Health, there is an open house this Sunday, March 1 from 11am to 3pm.

Big Lots Mental Health Pavilion Will Offer:

  • Nine stories at completion
  • Outpatient Programs
    • Critical Assessment and Treatment – Outpatient Crisis Clinic
    • Mood & Anxiety
    • Family Based Intensive Treatment
    • General Psychiatry
    • Partial Hospitalization Program
  • The inpatient psychiatry units will focus on:
    • Adolescents
    • Children
    • Youth with intellectual and developmental disabilities
  • 16-bed Youth Crisis Stabilization Unit
  • Psychiatric Crisis Center with 10-bed Extended Observation Suite
  • Ronald McDonald Family Room
  • Rooftop Outdoor Play Deck
  • Sanctuary and Quiet Spaces
  • Teaching and conference space for training the next generation of mental health experts and room for collaboration with community partners

Local Resources:

If someone you care about is in an emergency, life-threatening situation, call 9-1-1 or go to an emergency department. For crisis situations that are not life-threatening, please call your county’s psychiatric crisis line number. In Franklin County, call (614) 722-1800 for youth and adolescents 17 and under. Ages 18 and older should call (614) 276-2273. If someone you care about is having thoughts of suicide or needs to talk, encourage them to contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. If you prefer to text, you can text “START” to 741-741 where a live, trained specialist will respond back to you.

Nationwide Childrens Hospital Logo

Source: Nationwide Children’s Hospital / Nationwide Children’s Hospital

Source: NBC4i

Nationwide Children’s Hospital Opening Mental Health Pavilion!  was originally published on