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Hospitals grapple with wave of pediatric mental illness. Hospitals across the United States are reporting a surge in mental health-related admissions for children, straining a health care system already grappling with a shortage of inpatient beds and services. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in the November 13, 2020, Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, while the average number of weekly ED visits for other common childhood injuries and illnesses decreased significantly in 2020, average weekly visits for mental health-related reasons increased by 69%. Mental health experts attribute the surge to the COVID-19 pandemic with escalating rates of depression and anxiety, particularly among teens, related to social distancing and lockdown measures, as well as increased stress on families, loss of the usual support services that schools provide, and decreased community mental health services.