Behavioral Health Workforce Issues

One in four Americans experiences a mental illness or substance use disorder each year, and the majority also has a comorbid physical health condition.

  • Nearly 44 million adults experience a mental illness in a given year.
  • 1 in 5 children ages 13-18 have, or will have, a serious mental illness.
  • Depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide.
  • Approximately 10.2 million adults have co-occurring mental health and addition disorders.*
  • On average, 115 Americans die every day for an opioid overdose.**

The need for a strong behavioral health care workforce is more important than ever. The AHA is working to strengthen this important area of health care and integrate it with primary care.

*Infographics: Mental Health Facts, National Alliance on Mental Health,

**2019 AHA Environmental Scan.

Workforce Library

AHA divisions devoted to advancing workforce issues:

AHA Physician Alliance logo
AONE logo
AHVRP logo
ASHRM logo
Institute for Diversity and Health Equity logo

Related Resources

AHA Center for Health Innovation Market Scan
Treating the whole patient — both mind and body — in a well-coordinated system has become essential to health care’s mission. But integrating behavioral health…
AHA letter to the House Committee on Education and Labor regarding H.R. 1309, the Workplace Violence Prevention for Health Care and Social Service Workers Act.
AHA Center for Health Innovation Market Scan
With nearly half of all U.S. physicians experiencing burnout, along with nurses and other care team members, the financial costs to the field are mounting. A…
The AHA voices support for legislation (S. 1399) to revise and extend federal programs to develop the nursing workforce recently introduced by Sens. Jeff…
AHA recommends CMS actions to reduce burden of clinical documentation.
Newsletter highlighting AHA resources, advocacy updates, and more regarding behavioral health.