The Status Of Mental Healthcare In The US

There is a huge rise in the number of people suffering from mental illness in the United States. The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) has said that over 9.8 million adults over the age of 18 years have suffered from a serious mental illness that affects their day to day functioning in 2015. This is about 4% of America’s overall population. One in every five children in the US suffers from some sort of mental illness at some point in their lives. There is no doubt that the people suffering from mental disorders and problems are on the rise. There should be a system ready to take care of such patients. But, this is not the case here. A patient suffering from mental illness does not get the help that easily. It is not as easy as referring a patient to a specialized doctor in the case of a mentally ill patient.

Mental Healthcare

Does mental healthcare offer the necessary assistance?

If you take a look at the broader perspective, then you can say that the mental health care is failing the American patients and do not offer the care that they need.

  •    No options for emergencies

If you are suffering from a chest pain or any other health condition, you can seek immediate help from 9-1-1. But, there is no solid helpline in place for patients who are suffering from suicidal thoughts. There are certain crisis intervention numbers that one can call. But, these services are there to just tell if a patient needs emergency services to treat his or her mental illness or to get admitted to a mental hospital. People do not know the ways and means of how to help a person suffering from mental disorder.

  •    Not taken seriously

The mental illness patients are not treated with the same importance given to people suffering from physical illness. But, there might be several cases of physical illness patients suffering from mental illness as well. Often, not treating the mental illness and just looking at the physical illness has resulted in patients dying, despite medical care.

  •    Non-acceptance of insurances

There are many doctors who do not accept certain insurances as they will be losing money when they treat patients with certain insurances. It is a time that the insurance companies put some light into this matter and offer better reimbursement for the specialists treating such mental issue cases.

  •    Mental counseling services are not covered

The patients suffering from mental illness do not need expensive medications and therapies to treat their issues. They would need to sit for several sessions with the mentalist to solve the issues that they are facing in life. These sittings cost a lot of money and they are not covered by insurance.