HHS Announces Affordable Care Act Mental Health Services Funding

fundingThe U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced December 10 that it plans to issue a $50 million funding opportunity announcement to help Community Health Centers establish or expand behavioral health services for people living with mental illness, and drug and alcohol problems.  Community Health Centers will be able to use these new funds, made available through the Affordable Care Act, for efforts such as hiring new mental health and substance use disorder professionals, adding mental health and substance use disorder services, and employing team-based models of care.

“Most behavioral health conditions are treatable, yet too many Americans are not able to get needed treatment,” said Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Administrator Mary K. Wakefield, Ph.D., R.N.  “These new Affordable Care Act funds will expand the capacity of our network of community health centers to respond to the mental health needs in their communities.”

“These new funds will further the Department’s work to develop integrated primary and behavioral health care services to better meet the needs of people with mental health and substance use conditions,” said Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration Administrator, Pamela S. Hyde.

It is estimated these awards will support behavioral health expansion in approximately 200 existing health centers nationwide.

http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2013pres/12/20131210a.html

Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services – December 10, 2013

National Report Finds One-In-Five Americans Experienced Mental Illness in the Past Year – Substance Dependence and Abuse Rates Higher among Those Experiencing Mental Illness

A new national report reveals that 45.9 million American adults aged 18 or older, or 20 percent of this age group, experienced mental illness in the past year. The rate of mental illness was more than twice as high among those aged 18 to 25 (29.9 percent) than among those aged 50 and older (14.3 percent). Adult women were also more likely than men to have experienced mental illness in the past year (23 percent versus 16.8 percent).

According to the report, rates for substance dependence were far higher for those who had experienced either any mental illness or serious mental illness than for the adult population which had not experienced mental illness in the past year. Adults experiencing any mental illness in the past year were more than three times as likely to have met the criteria for substance dependence or abuse in that period than those who had not experienced mental illness in the past year (20 percent versus 6.1 percent).

The SAMHSA press release can be accessed at: http://www.samhsa.gov/newsroom/advisories/1201185326.aspx

The complete survey findings from this report are available at: http://www.samhsa.gov/data/NSDUH/2k10MH_Findings/

Source: The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration – January 19, 2012

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