Millennials Are Struggling With Mental, Physical Health, Study Finds
The Blue Cross Blue Shield Association analysis found that rates of depression — as well as alcohol, tobacco and drug use — are rising.
BCBSA: Millennials' Mental Health Is On The Decline—And COVID-19 Is Making It Worse
Millennials' health is on the decline, due in large part to rising rates of several behavioral health conditions, according to a new report. The Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (BCBSA) released an analysis looking at the health of millennials and found that rates of major depression in this cohort increased by 12% between 2017 and 2018. In that same window, rates of alcohol use disorder increased by 7% and rates of tobacco use disorder and substance use disorder increased by 5%. (Minemyer, 10/16)
'This Is A Moment In History When Suicide Prevention Must Be Prioritized As A Serious Public-Health Concern'
A pandemic-era rise in the suicide rate is not “inevitable,” argues a new journal article that offers strategies for leaders in policy, business and health care to help reduce suicide risk. While evidence from the coronavirus pandemic’s first six months has pointed to “specific effects on suicide risk,” real-time suicide-mortality data isn’t available in most parts of the world, and data surveillance varies widely, wrote Christine Moutier, the chief medical officer of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP), in a JAMA Psychiatry article published Friday. Meanwhile, “emerging data from several countries finds no evidence of increased suicide rates during the pandemic thus far.” (Jagannathan, 10/19)
Empathy Overload? How To Care For Yourself While Supporting Others
Feeling overwhelmed? Maybe the parent of a preschooler in your family just called to say they need extra help with child care, and a sick neighbor wants to know if you can pick up some groceries for her. Meanwhile, your best friend keeps calling, wanting to vent. In less stressful times, perhaps, you'd have jumped to help out and lend an ear. But after months of social isolation, juggling work demands, and caring for loved ones, the balance has started to tip. Suddenly your own need for emotional support is outweighing your capacity for kindness. (Fraga and Crowe, 10/17)
In related news —
Mental Health Experts To Pair With Cops In Northern Illinois
Winnebago County sheriff’s deputies and Rockford police officers will pair with mental health experts when responding to emergency psychiatric and suicidal episodes as a new approach over arrests. Law enforcement will team with Rosecrance crisis-intervention specialists to create a three-month pilot program, beginning next month, in efforts to divert people in psychiatric crises away from the criminal justice system and into treatment instead, Winnebago County Sheriff Gary Caruana said. (10/17)
Removing Cops From Behavioral Crisis Calls: 'We Need To Change The Model'
In what will be among the largest and boldest urban police reform experiment in decades San Francisco is creating and preparing to deploy teams of professionals from the fire and health departments — not police — to respond to most calls for people in a psychiatric, behavioral or substance abuse crisis. Instead of police, these types of crisis calls will mostly be handled by new unarmed mobile teams comprised of paramedics, mental health professionals and peer support counselors starting next month. (Westervelt, 10/19)
New Hampshire Gets Federal Mental Health Grant
New Hampshire has been awarded more than $300,000 to reduce crime and recidivism among defendants who have mental health issues, the U.S. attorney’s office announced. U.S. Attorney Scott W. Murray said the $326,150 Department of Justice grant will go to Carroll County to support adult and juvenile justice initiatives. The programs aim to provide care before, during and after incarceration for those with serious mental illness. The funding also goes to support training to law enforcement and their partner mental health and substance abuse authorities with a goal of improving the outcomes of mental ill defendants. (10/17)
The Washington Post:
Fatal Police Shootings Of Mentally Ill People More Likely In Small And Midsized Areas
The final moments of Stacy Kenny’s life are captured on a recorded 911 call. Kenny, who had been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, begs an emergency operator to explain why she’s been pulled over. Amid screaming and rustling sounds, police officers smash the windows on her red Nissan, Taser her twice, punch her in the face more than a dozen times and try to pull her out by her hair. But Kenny, 33, who legally had changed her gender but still appeared to be a man, was anchored to the car by a locked seat belt. Her life ends, as does the 911 call, when she tries to flee by driving away with one of the officers still inside the car. There’s a burst of gunfire, then an officer says: “We are all okay. Bad guy down.” (Kindy, Tate, Jenkins and Mellnik, 10/17)