U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius knows how essential mental health prevention and treatment are for our overall health. Mental Health Month was established in 1949 to increase awareness of the importance of mental health and wellness in Americans’ lives, and to celebrate recovery from mental illness. We know that mental health is essential for a person’s overall health. Prevention works, treatment is effective, and people can recover from mental disorders and live full and productive lives.
Over the past 20 years, SAMHSA and others in HHS and across the Federal Government, the public health community, and the general public have increased understanding of the prevention and treatment of mental health problems. These efforts have significantly improved the outlook for those affected by mental illnesses.
Successful efforts that have raised awareness about the importance of mental health and promoted acceptance, support, prevention, and recovery from these mental health conditions include:
- Affordable Care Act
- Community Mental Health Services Block Grant
- Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008
- Garrett Lee Smith State/Tribal Suicide Prevention Program.
Mental Health Month gives all of us a valuable opportunity to celebrate the tremendous strides this Nation has made in promoting mental health and increasing the public’s knowledge that effective services and support are available.
Support Mental Health Month With These Resources:
- Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) Evidence-Based Practices (EBP) KIT: Interactive tools offering customized, community-based services for people with mental illness
- Sustaining Grassroots Community-Based Programs: Six books to help grassroots and faith-based organizations create comprehensive substance abuse and mental health treatment services
- Helping Yourself Heal (Spanish version): A directory of preventative resources for men in treatment for substance abuse who have been victims of child abuse
- Promoting Recovery and Resilience for Children and Youth Involved in Juvenile Justice and Child Welfare Systems: Treatment approaches and national findings regarding how children’s lives can be improved through youth care and trauma-informed services.