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Spotlight on Mental Health

The National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions/MBGH Action Brief "Hope and Healing for Mental Illness is Possible" lays out the challenge for employers this way: " Mental health conditions are the leading cause of disability worldwide. As importantly, untreated depression and anxiety are leading causes of lost productivity and effectiveness in the workforce. In the U.S., about one in five adults will experience mental illness in a given year, 60 percent of whom don’t get help. Many who do reach out face a daunting labyrinth of high costs, a dearth of providers, and unsuccessful treatment, leading to waning motivation, hopelessness, and progressively worse symptoms." 

This is not a pretty picture for employers, but most importantly, it is not a pretty picture for your employees and their families. The Action Brief discusses how employers can take five specific actions to address these challenges:

  • Require independent validation of mental health parity compliance
  • Reduce barriers to in-network access to behavior health professionals
  • Promote the collaborative care model
  • Support acess to mental health medication options
  • Support, engage, and advocate for employee mental health and well-being. 

Click here to get a copy of the Action Brief.

Other Actions for Employers

Use the Working Well: Leading a Mentally Healthy Business toolkit from the Northeast Business Group on Health, to (1) know the impact (2) break the silence (3) deliver affordable access and (4) build a culture of well-being. Find valuable employer action steps, resources, and case studies to help shape your approach to mental health.

Read this blog, from our sister-coalition the Minnesota Health Action Group, on actually delivering on the promise of mental health parity.

Attend the Methodist Healthcare Dennis H. Jones Living Well Network mental health breakfast on March 6 where Marlie Matlin, Academy Award-winning actress and mental health activist, will share her personal story and highlight the importance of acceptance and help for those with mental health concerns. There will also be breakout session on opioid abuse, domestic violence, and adverse childhood events (ACEs). Click here for more information and to register.

Get results, later this year, from the National Alliance and MBGH deep dive into how health plans and mental health-specialty managers perform on essential elements of mental health services provided to employers and employees.

Posted by Cristie Travis at 6:18 PM

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