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Youth and Young Adults Increasingly Relying on Emergency Department for Psychiatric Care

Sep 06 2019
The number of Emergency Department (ED) visits for psychiatric concerns among people aged 6-24 increased by 28% between 2011 and 2015, according to the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey. Especially significant increases in psychiatric ED visits were seen among adolescents (aged 12-17) and Hispanic patients. This represents a growing need for mental health care and crisis management in ED settings, which are often poorly equipped for these situations — only 16% of patients in the study population were seen by a mental health professional. For more information, please visit the Suicide Prevention Resource Center.

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Trends in SAMHSA Annual Data Release Emphasize Importance of Treating Dual Diagnosis

Aug 20 2019
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has released the 2018 edition of the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, the nation’s primary resource for data on mental health and substance use in the United States. Encouraging trends include decreases in the use of tobacco and alcohol by pregnant women, the use of illicit drugs by young adults and the misuse of pain relievers overall. A notable area of concern is in co-occurring conditions. Approximately 9.2 million adults experienced both a mental illness and a substance use disorder in 2018. To learn more, please visit the SAMHSA website.

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Research Shows Inconsistencies in Jail Mental Health Assessment Tool

Aug 05 2019
When individuals are booked into a county jail they are commonly evaluated for current psychiatric symptoms and mental health history using the Brief Jail Mental Health Screen (BJMHS). To test the reliability of the BJMHS, researchers analyzed 3.5 years of data from a single large jail. The analysis showed that a person who had been booked into the jail and screened multiple times was more likely to be referred for further evaluation and treatment with each additional screening — and not because of different answers. This indicates that the BJMHS may be sensitive to reporting bias, and therefore not a consistently reliable tool. To learn more, please see the study abstract.

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