New Report Tracks the Behavioral Health of America
The federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has released the “2014 National Behavioral Health Barometer” (Barometer). This publication provides state and national data about key aspects of behavioral health care issues affecting American communities. Those issues include rates of serious mental illness, suicidal thoughts, substance use, underage drinking and the percentages of those who seek treatment for these disorders. The Barometer indicates that the nation’s behavioral health is improving in some areas, particularly among adolescents. For example, past-month use of both illicit drugs and cigarettes has fallen for youth ages 12-17 from 2009 to 2013 (from 10.1 percent to 8.8 percent for illicit drugs, and 9.0 percent to 5.6 percent for cigarettes.) Past-month binge drinking among children ages 12-17 has also fallen from 2009 to 2013 (from 8.9 percent to 6.2 percent).
“The Barometer provides new insight into what is happening on the ground in states across the country,” said SAMHSA Administrator Pamela S. Hyde. “It provides vital information on the progress being made in each state as well as the challenges ahead. States and local communities use these data to determine the most effective ways of addressing their behavioral health care needs.”
Source: Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services