More "good news" on the status of public health in Texas:
· Mental illness is a leading cause of disability in the U.S.
· One in five Texans (20%)faces some form of mental illness.
· Texas ranks 49th in per capita spending on treatment of mental illness.
· Inadequate community-based mental health programs increase the likelihood that persons with mental illness will wind up in the criminal justice system.
· Approximately 900,000 adults in Texas met the DSHS mental health priority population definition in 2005, yet less than half in greatest need received mental health services.
· Forty-six percent of ER visits have behavioral health issues as a basic or contributing factor.
· Untreated mental illness results in increasing pressure on state and local resources.
· Community-based services reduce the rate of costly care in emergency rooms, hospitals, jails and prisons, and reduce the need for transportation to state hospitals for stabilization.
· Every $1 spent on mental health services saves $5 in overall health care costs.
· In Fiscal Year 2005, Texas average monthly emergency room costs were 27% lower for Medicaid clients receiving needed community mental health treatment than for those who received no such treatment.
· In Fiscal Year 2005, Texas average monthly emergency room costs were almost 35% lower for Medicaid clients receiving needed substance abuse treatment than for those who did not.
· Untreated mental illness costs Texas $16.6 billion per year.
· Treatment for mental illness is highly successful. (Depression: 80%, Panic Disorder: 75%, Schizophrenia: 60%, Heart Disease: 45-50%).
[Mental Health Association of Greater Dallas]
If you live in Texas, you might want to pass this information along to your State Senator and your House Member.