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Screening for social, emotional and developmental concerns is essential to early identification of mental health problems in children and youth. It is the first step to discovering when a child may need further diagnosis and treatment. Screening provides an opportunity to intervene early and improve the course of healthy development and functioning.

Screenings usually occur in places accessible and appropriate to the needs of children and youth. These settings include primary health care, home visiting, Head Start and early childhood education. The process also provides families with information about early childhood development and appropriate services and supports.

The Minnesota Interagency Developmental Screening Task Force provides recommendations for developmental and social-emotional screening tools for young children. Refer to the All Instruments at a Glance document for these recommendations. 

In addition to developmental and social-emotional screening for young children, there are other screening initiatives and instruments that target certain ages or circumstances related to the mental health of children and youth.

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