WASHINGTON D.C.—U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.), senior member of the Senate Finance Committee, today was appointed to a key leadership role in the Senate Finance Committee’s efforts to address gaps in America’s mental health care system. Senators Carper and Cassidy (R-La.) were named co-chairs of the Improving Access to Behavioral Health Care for Children and Young People working group.
Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) announced the co-chairs during a hearing with U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy on youth mental health care. The purpose of the working groups is to produce a bipartisan bill that will aim to improve America’s mental health care system.
“I’m honored to have the opportunity to serve as a co-chair of this bipartisan working group on youth mental health. The pediatric mental health crisis is not a challenge that the Finance Committee can meet alone. But I believe that the groups announced by Chairman Wyden today will help to forge the way forward,” Carper said. “I’m excited to work with my fellow co-chair Senator Cassidy in the weeks and months ahead to help make a difference in the lives of millions of young people in Delaware and across our nation.”
During today’s hearing with Surgeon General Dr. Murthy, Sen. Carper focused his questioning on how investing in school and community-based programs can help to improve children’s mental health. Last year, Senator Carper introduced the Telehealth Improvement for Kids’ Essential Services (TIKES) Act of 2021—legislation that would help states expand telehealth options for low-income Americans, especially children.