Lancet Report Estimates Global Mental Health Crisis Could Cost $16 trillion by 2030
Mental health disorders are increasing around the world and could cost the global economy $16 trillion by 2030, a team of 28 global experts concluded in a report published this week in The Lancet.
Vikram Patel, a professor at Harvard Medical School and the report’s co-author, said that while some of the costs will be the direct costs of healthcare and medicines or other therapies, most are indirect costs in the form of productivity loss and spending on social welfare, education, and law and order, according to a Reuters story.
The report was released before the second Global Summit on Mental Health Culture Change in London this week and concluded that more than 13 million lives could be saved every year if mental illness was treated properly.
U.S. Surgeon General Adams and Labor Secretary Acosta Cite MAT in White House Blog
Helping Americans “sidelined by drug addiction” into the workforce is good for communities and American business, U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams, M.D. and Labor Secretary R. Alexander Acosta wrote in a White House blog post this week.
The federal officials cited a strong economy while also noting that too many Americans are not participating in the workforce. In discussing the nation’s opioid crisis, they recognized the value of medication assisted treatment, or MAT.
“Effective treatment is available for opioid use disorder,” Jerome and Acosta wrote. “The gold standard is the use of medication in combination with ongoing behavioral therapy, also known as Medication Assisted Treatment. Comprehensive treatment should also include efforts to enable these individuals to rejoin the workforce,” they added. “There is strong evidence that a job can help sustain long-term recovery.”
Pennsylvania and Health Insurers Approve Deal to Remove Prior Authorization to Treat SUD
Seven major health insurers and the commonwealth of Pennsylvania on Friday agreed to remove prior authorization requirements for treating substance use disorders (SUD), which the American Medical Association and Pennsylvania Medical Society say could have the potential to save thousands of lives.
Insurers also committed to including a “comprehensive range of medications” to treat SUD on the lowest cost-sharing tier of a health plan’s pharmacy benefit as part of the agreement.
“We have long advocated for the removal of prior authorization and other barriers to increase access to medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for substance use disorders,” AMA President-elect Patrice A. Harris, MD, MA said in a news release about the deal. “The leadership shown by the governor and his administration to reach this agreement should act as a call for all states to demonstrate that they support patients’ access to care over needless administrative burdens.”
Senate Resolution Marks 10th Anniversary of Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act
The Senate this week passed a resolution that recognizes the 10th anniversary of the Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act’s enactment.
Introduced by Sens. Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-La.) and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), the resolution also honors the late Sens. Paul Wellstone (D-Minn.) and Pete Domenici (R-N.M.), who fought for access to mental health treatment and whose names are on the bill that became law on Oct. 3, 2008. Wellstone died in a plane crash in October 2002 and Domenici died in September 2017 following complications from abdominal surgery.
“Senators Wellstone and Domenici worked to ensure access to mental health treatment,” Cassidy said in a news release. “Passing the Mental Health Reform Act of 2016 continued this bipartisan effort to remove stigma surrounding mental illness and increase access to treatment.”
SAMHSA Introduces Early Serious Mental Illness Treatment Locator
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) this week launched its Early Serious Mental Illness Treatment Locator to help connect people experiencing a first onset of serious mental illness to effective care.
According to SAMHSA, programs that treat serious mental illness—including first episode psychosis programs—are becoming more available. In two years, the number has increased to more than 270 programs in 49 states from a few programs in 17 states.
The locator is a confidential and anonymous source of information for persons and their family members who are seeking treatment in the United States and U.S. territories for a recent onset of serious mental illness, such as psychosis, schizophrenia, bi-polar disorder, and other conditions.
CDC Highlights Emergency Preparedness and Children for World Mental Health Day
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) earlier this week published a blog post about the Atlanta-based agency’s experiences to help inform mental health interventions and improve outcomes for children after public health emergencies and disasters.
The post focused on World Mental Health Day’s theme this year—”Young People and Mental Health in a Changing World”—and shared the lessons the CDC learned from the 2017 hurricane season.
“Mental stress from a disaster can be harder on children,” the authors wrote. “Children are more vulnerable in emergencies because of their physical, developmental, behavioral, and emotional differences from adults,” they said, adding that children may also have difficulty or may not be able to communicate their symptoms or feelings.
Click here to learn more.
SAMHSA Releases Disaster Distress Hotline Reminder for Hurricane Michael Survivors
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) posted information regarding immediate crisis counseling for those affected by Hurricane Michael.
SAMHSA’s Helpline, 1-800-985-5990, is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, for anyone who needs counseling after a natural or human-made tragedy.
NABH thanks its members in the region who have provided and will continue to provide care for those who need it.
Register Today for the NABH 2019 Annual Meeting!
Please visit NABH’s Annual Meeting homepage today to register and reserve your hotel room for the 2019 NABH Annual Meeting — Behavioral Healthcare: Improving Coordination, Collaboration, Integration. We look forward to seeing you at the Mandarin Oriental Washington, D.C. from March 18-20, 2019!
For questions or comments about CEO Update, please contact Jessica Zigmond.