mental health

Rethinking the ways in which we address mental health issues is critical in the development of new and innovative technologies, treatments, and strategies. Instead of simply providing a diagnosis, treatment strategies should focus on the entire community of individuals affected by mental illness, said Dr. Arthur Evans, CEO of the American Psychological Association. At the “Tackling Mental Health Through Innovation” forum hosted by CQ Roll Call on September 19 in Washington, D.C., Evans emphasized the importance of intervention strategies as a top priority to ensure at-risk individuals receive necessary care. “Let’s make sure that within the community we have the infrastructure, the...
There was a time when people didn’t know that suicide is preventable. Before suicide prevention research began in earnest, people were afraid to even talk about suicide, because they thought they could cause someone to die by suicide if they spoke the word: that it would put the idea in their head, and the person in distress would act on it. The only time the brain was even mentioned was if there was physical damage to the brain as the result of a suicide attempt. People placed social judgments on those with mental health conditions because they didn’t understand that the brain is an organ that can be remedied, just like other organs. Research, a guided process of inquiry, has led us to...
One in five Americans suffer from mental illness but less than half receive treatment. Teresa Pasquini, whose son was diagnosed with schizophrenia at age 16, spoke about the difficulties in accessing treatment at a program about mental health at the Newseum in Washington D.C. on July 18 sponsored by The Hill . “He has fallen through every crack of our system,” Pasquini said. “We are dealing with a system of lucks and heroics rather than a continuous system of care.” Pasquini, an advocate for mental health, joined federal and state leaders, health officials, caregivers and academics for the discussion titled, The State of Mental Health: Challenges and Solutions, supported by Janssen...
This blog post is part of a weekly series focusing on different aspects of public health leading up to Public Health Thank You Day on Monday, November 21, 2016. Join the conversation on social media with the hashtag #PHTYD and visit www.publichealththankyouday.org for more information. Deaths in the United States due to prescription and illicit opioid overdoses have quadrupled over the past 17 years. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 78 Americans die each day from overdoses of drugs like oxycodone, hydrocodone, methadone, and heroin. Over the course of the opioid crisis, sales of prescription opioids in the U.S. have nearly quadrupled , but the amount of...
Mental health is a major health issue in the United States, as 43.8 million Americans suffer from diseases such as depression, anxiety and bipolar disorder. Over 50% of Americans who suffer from mental disorders do not receive any form of treatment or health services. Mental health has become a considerable issue for veterans returning from wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. As of 2015, up to 23% of those who have returned from these two countries have developed post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Veterans display a similar trend for lack of treatment as is seen in the general population. Even more alarming, of those who sought treatment in 2008, slightly over 50% received just minimally...
This blog post is part of a weekly series focusing on different aspects of public health leading up to Public Health Thank You Day on Monday, November 21, 2016. Join the conversation on social media with the hashtag #PHTYD and visit www.publichealththankyouday.org for more information. As a clinical psychologist who treats children and their families, I have the privilege of helping children gain better understanding of themselves, as individuals and in the context of their family, school and community. The opportunity to intervene in multiple settings can enhance outcomes and is one of the most interesting and challenging aspects of my work. However, such coordination of care is beyond the...
Mental Health Awareness Week in early October is an important marker that helps all of us shed light on the multifaceted problems associated with mental illness and the important work being done to alleviate suffering. Just consider these devastating facts and statistics: - Suicide is among the top ten causes of death in the U.S. - One in four people worldwide suffer from some type of mental illness, and two-thirds of them do not get the treatment they need. - Everyday we hear about mass shootings, a rise in heroin addiction, young people lured into terrorist groups, veterans suffering with PTSD, and increases in depression and anxiety among children and adults. Clearly, mental illness is a...
Dear Research Advocate: Now that the President has signed off on the budget agreement, Appropriations Committee leadership is negotiating to establish the dollar level for each appropriations subcommittee to work with. Given the December 11 deadline for action, the committees are already working to set allocations for each federal agency and program. Here is a list of the Twitter handles for each House and Senate appropriator, along with suggested tweets. Please take a minute to tweet these leaders on why it is so important to increase funding for NIH, CDC, FDA, AHRQ and NSF; federal agencies that help keep the wheels of science and medical progress turning! It’s a mistake to just assume...
This blog post is part of a weekly series focusing on different aspects of public health leading up to Public Health Thank You Day on Monday November 23, 2015. Join the conversation on social media with the hashtag #PHTYD and visit http://www.publichealththankyouday.org (link is external) for more information. Dr. Carrie Bearden, clinical neuroscientist at UCLA seeks to understand the underlying biology of mood disorders in teens The rate of mood disorders nearly doubles when children enter adolescence. Dr. Carrie Bearden, Professor of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences and Psychology at UCLA, seeks to understand why. She uses interdisciplinary approaches to examine the role of circadian...
Dear Research Advocate, Former VP candidate and Ways and Means Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI-01) appears poised to become the next Speaker of the House. This turn of events improves the outlook for a budget deal, potentially including FY16 funding, sequestration relief for one or two years, and a new debt limit. See our letter with United for Medical Research and two major defense industry associations on the negative consequences of sequestration. Senate HELP Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN) made news this week reaffirming his willingness to consider mandatory spending for NIH in his Innovation Initiative. To turn “maybe” into “yes,” advocates must be heard. Earlier this week, a...

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