20% of Adults Have Mental Illness or Drug Problem

Here is a short article from WebMD.  The point of the article is to alert our lawmakers to the need to consider mental health as important as physical health because a large portion of their constituents could be in need of better access and better care.

Mental health has always been the step-child in the healthcare arena.  Mental health gets little to no funding, Mental Health gets no recognition.  Mental health care receives a pittance of the funding sent to healthcare in general.  This has been the truth for the last 25 years I worked as a psychiatric nurse.

It’s a shame that in a civilized country who spends billions on healthcare, the mental health system receives a very tiny part of that amount.  Visit a psychiatric hospital if you don’t believe me.  The buildings will be antiquated, the computer system will  be rudimentary if it exists at all, the environment for patients will not be very attractive, and the staff will be harried.  That is what we in the mental health field have to deal with; all the while trying to help really sick people get better.

Please read this article and maybe have a talk with your elected officials to see what can be done to change this terrible situation.

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20% of Adults Have Mental Illness or Drug Problem

New Jersey is the mentally healthiest state, report finds

By Robert Preidt

HealthDay Reporter

FRIDAY, July 21, 2017 (HealthDay News) — Nearly 1 in 5 American adults deals with a mental illness or substance abuse problem each year, a U.S. government study says.

Oregon has the highest rate, and New Jersey the lowest, according to 2012-2014 data analyzed by the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

Overall, almost 44 million Americans 18 or older had a diagnosable mental, behavioral or emotional disorder in the past year, researchers said. They reviewed national surveys on drug use and health.

“The figures in SAMHSA’s report remind us how important it is to take mental health as seriously as any other health condition,” Kana Enomoto, SAMHSA acting deputy assistant secretary, said in an agency news release.

The overall national rate of mental illness was about 18 percent.

Read the rest of the article here

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