Bryan H. King, MD, MBA, joined UCSF Health two years ago to achieve “something transformational” for the mental health of Bay Area children.

The Vice President for Child Behavioral Health Services at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals knew the challenge. Nationwide, one in five youths is likely to experience a mental health condition. Meanwhile, there is a serious shortage of child and adolescent psychiatry services, felt acutely in California, where there’s an average of 13 psychiatrists per 100,000 children compared to 20 to 30 in New England.

Despite this reality, King, a national leader in child and adolescent psychiatry, sees an opportunity: To leverage and expand the ranks of talented and dedicated mental health clinicians and researchers at an affiliated UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals in Oakland and San Francisco, and to grow and fortify the programs and services, including early intervention, to meet the needs of children on both sides of the Bay.

"We are committed," he said, "to elevating care to children of all backgrounds, throughout the Bay Area and beyond."

King’s vision is for mental health to be seen, and treated, as a key component of a child’s overall health and well-being. He and the entire team at the Benioff Children’s Hospitals are well aware of the challenge.