Almost one third of the world’s population are children and adolescents, of which 90% live in low and middle- income countries (LMIC). WHO states that around 15-20% of the world's children and adolescents have mental health related issues. About half of mental disorders begin before the age of 14 years. Similar types of disorders are being reported across cultures . Neuropsychiatric disorders are among the leading causes of worldwide disability in young people. Yet, regions of the world with the highest percentage of population under the age of 19 have the poorest level of mental health resources. Most low- and middle-income countries have only one child psychiatrist for every 1 to 4 million people.
Childhood and adolescence is an important period in an individual’s physical, cognitive and psychosocial development. In addition to rapid individual developmental changes, children may face many familial and social pressures which can make this period quite stressful, thereby rendering themmore vulnerable for developmental, emotional and behavioral problem. These problems might manifest themselves in academic difficulties as well as in psychiatric illness. Poor mental health has negative impact on children’s quality of life, school attendance and educational performance. Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Outpatient Clinic was started within Kanti Children’s Hospital premises at the end of July, 2015 to focus on children and adolescent mental health .
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