Mental Health in the Headlines: Week of May 12, 2014 | Mental Health America

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Mental Health in the Headlines: Week of May 12, 2014





Week of May 12, 2014

Mental Health in the Headlines is a weekly newsletter providing the latest developments at Mental Health America and summaries of news, views and research in the mental health field. Coverage of news items in this publication does not represent Mental Health America’s support for or opposition to the stories summarized or the views they express.


Mental Health America 2014 Annual Conference, September 10-12, Atlanta, Georgia—Parity and the Affordable Care Act: Bridging Gaps to Advance Mental Health. Don't miss this unique opportunity to discuss what we have learned in the process of implementing the Affordable Care and Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Acts, and to collaborate to identify next steps and opportunities for action. 

Statement of Mental Health America on “Strengthening Mental Health in Our Communities Act of 2014.”

May is Mental Health Month—Mind Your Health.

A Look at the Gaps in Mental Health Care—An Interview with Dr. David Shern of Mental Health America.

The MHA Career Center matches the best employers with the best talent in the mental health field.  Find your employment match at


House Dems Introduce Mental Health Bill: Democrats in the House of Representatives led by Rep. Ron Barber (D-Ariz.) have introduced new mental health legislation that proposes new initiatives to help prevent and treat mental illness. The “Strengthening Mental Health in Our Communities Act of 2014” would also boost care for schoolchildren, veterans and seniors, and urges increased research on serious mental illness. It proposes a new White House Office of Mental Health Policy to ensure agencies are collaborating to help people with mental illness with care, housing, job support and other services. And it would reauthorize the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), which provides grants for community-based mental health groups. Mental Health America expressed its support for the legislation. The Barber bill differs from legislation introduced by Rep. Tim Murphy (R-Pa). That bill would expand use of Assisted Outpatient Treatment (AOT) and condition receipt of mental health block grant funds on states enacting AOT. It would also undermine e the Protection and Advocacy function in every state by drastically reducing funding by eighty-five percent. Additionally, the bill would eliminate programs at SAMHSA and remove its oversight function. And it would loosen privacy protections. (The Hill, 5/6/14)

Children with ADHD More Likely to Experience Social Difficulties: New research indicates that children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may be more likely to be part of families that are affected by poverty, divorce, neighborhood violence and substance use. Researchers analyzed the answers of parents of 65,680 children aged 6-17 who responded to a 2011 survey. About 12 percent of the kids had been diagnosed with ADHD, and their parents reported higher rates of various problems than the parents of kids without ADHD did. Researchers say knowledge about the prevalence and types of adverse experiences among children diagnosed with ADHD may guide efforts to address trauma and improve screening, diagnostic accuracy and management. (HealthDay News, 5/6/14)

British Charity Reports Rise in Afghanistan Vets Seeking Mental Health Help: A British veterans’ mental health charity reported a 57 percent increase over one year in Afghanistan veterans seeking support. The group Combat Stress received referrals for 358 veterans last year, compared to 228 in 2012. Its caseload now includes more than 660 veterans. The increase is linked to the withdrawal of British troops in Afghanistan from all but two bases in Helmand province. The charity said it found that veterans wait an average of 13 years after serving before seeking help, but the average time has now fallen to 18 months for Afghanistan veterans. Combat Stress also reported that their total caseload of 5,400 veterans across the country was the highest number in its 95-year history. (Time, 5/12/14)


On SAMHSA’s blog, “Recovery Includes Medical Treatment.”

NPR looks at “Telepsychiatry Brings Emergency Mental Health Care To Rural Areas.”

Kaiser Health News reports on training police in Mental Health 1010.

The Los Angeles Times reports on “Overcoming barriers to mental health and substance abuse care.”

The Washington Post reports on Hillary Clinton’s remarks on mental health and early intervention programs.

The Huffington Post looks at barriers to mental health care in Latino communities.

Behavioral Healthcare reports on Tom Insel’s” Four inconvenient truths of mental illness treatment.”

CNN looks at problems with China's mental health care system.


Integrating Mental Health with Ob/Gyn Visits Eases Women’s Depression: Women who received collaborative care for depression at obstetrics and gynecology clinics showed fewer symptoms after treatment than women receiving usual depression care, according to a new study. Researchers found that collaborative care helped decrease depression symptoms for most women by at least 50 percent after one year of treatment. Women who received collaborative care also were more likely to return for follow-up care and reported greater satisfaction with the care they received, researchers report in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology. The approach, called Depression Attention for Women Now (DAWN), was tested at Harborview Medical Center and University of Washington Medical Center’s Roosevelt Clinic. Of the 205 participants, more than half were managing Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), as well as depression symptoms. Many had low incomes and little or no health insurance. For the study, women were randomly assigned to receive the collaborative care intervention or typical care. The women in each group received treatment for up to 12 months. Follow-up continued for an additional six months, the researchers noted. Women who received collaborative care could opt for follow-ups in person or by phone, and choose whether they wanted counseling, medication or a combination of both. (, 5/10/14)


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Mental Health in the Headlines is produced weekly by Mental Health America. Staff: Steve Vetzner, senior director, Media Relations.

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