Mental Health Definitions

Child with Emotional Disturbance: Has a diagnosis and seriously limited functional capacity as assessed by a mental health professional. Refer child for a mental health evaluation if you think he/she meets this definition.

Child with Serious Emotional Disturbance: Has been determined by a mental health professional to meet one of the following:

1. Has psychosis or clinical depression;

2. Is at risk of harming self or others as a result of emotional disturbance

3. Has psychopathological symptoms as a result of being a victim of physical/sexual abuse or trauma in the past year

4. Has significant impairment in functioning at home, school or in the community lasting at least one year as assessed by a mental health professional

Serious and Persistent Mental Illness (SPMI): A mental health diagnosis that meets at least one of the following:

1.  The refugee has been treated by a crisis team 2 or more times in the last 24 months.

2. The refugee has a diagnosis of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression or borderline personality disorder, significant functional impairment and a written opinion from a mental health professional stating the refugee is  likely to have  future episodes requiring psychiatric inpatient care unless support is provided.

3. Within the last 24 months, the refugee has 2 or more episodes of inpatient psychiatric care

4. Within the last 12 months, the refugee has been psychiatrically hospitalized for more than 6 months

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