Facing a Broken Mental Health System, Many U.S. Teens Fall Off a Dangerous ‘Cliff’ in Their Care

June 17, 2020

(STAT News) – An 18th birthday can mean many things. It’s a formal step into adulthood. It’s the newfound right to vote, get a tattoo, join the armed forces, be called for jury duty. It’s also what some mental health providers know, anecdotally, as “the cliff,” the cutoff at which teens with mental health conditions are flung into adulthood, often without any preparation for the challenges to care ahead. Young adults are among the most at risk of major mental illness, but are among the least likely to get mental health care — which experts say is a huge, pressing problem.