May is a time to raise awareness of those living with mental or behavioral health issues and to help reduce the stigma so many experience. Hospitals and health systems play an important role in providing behavioral health care and helping patients find resources available in their community.
As Mental Health Awareness Month, May is a time to raise awareness of and reduce the stigma surrounding behavioral health issues, as well as highlighting the ways how mental illness and addiction can affect all of us – patients, providers, families, and our society at large.
Hospitals and health systems play an important role in the conversations we have around mental health care, including creating partnerships that address behavioral health issues in non-traditional ways. Many of our members are creating new innovations around how behavioral health disorders are identified and treated—through the integration of physical and behavioral health services, changes in their emergency departments and inpatient and outpatient settings. These strategies improve the overall value of health care and can lead to improvements in patient outcomes, quality of care and total costs.
As part of its long-standing commitment to supporting all organizations that work in the realm of behavioral health care, AHA supports the integration of behavioral and physical health, and will continue to help hospitals as they play key roles in establishing partnerships and programs to ensure access to the full continuum of behavioral health care for all who need it.
Read how hospitals and health systems can tackle growing mental health concerns amongst AAPI communities through data and community engagement.
Health care has always been a demanding profession, and the effects of the last few years have meant that health care workers have been asked to do more with less.
In addition to Mental Health Awareness Month, May is Older Americans Month. Arpan Waghray, M.D., CEO, Providence’s Well Being Trust, and Past Chair of the American Hospital Association Committee on Behavioral Health, discusses senior mental health and offers resources on mental health in older adults.
With the COVID-19 pandemic receding from the national headlines and public health emergency (PHE) winding down later this month, it’s imperative to reflect on the pandemic’s impact on mental health care in the United States, and how we must adapt to face the ongoing challenge of providing mental health care services to our communities.
Child & Adolescent Mental Health and Maternal Mental Health Webpages
These new resources pages are designed to provide information, resources, and best practices to better support hospitals and health systems in addressing child and adolescent mental health and maternal mental health.
The AHA, together with behavioral health and language experts from member hospitals and partner organizations, has released a series of downloadable posters to help your employees adopt patient-centered, respectful language. Please consider downloading, printing and sharing each poster with your team members and encourage them to use this language both in front of patients and when talking to colleagues. People matter and the words we use to describe them or the disorders they have matter.
The resources on this webpage illustrate how hospitals and health systems are working to “Stem the Tide” of the opioid epidemic – but much work remains.
AHA is pleased to offer resources that make it easier for hospitals and health systems to discover proven strategies and deploy best practices that improve the mental health and wellbeing of their staff and breathe new life into America’s most trusted professionals.
More Mental Health Awareness Month Resources
- De-escalating Workplace Violence in Behavioral Health Settings
- Podcast: Tidelands Health Series : The American Hospital Association has a longstanding commitment to improving access to high quality, affordable treatment services for psychiatric and substance use disorders; commonly referred to has behavioral health disorders. This podcast series will explore one health system’s collaborative work with local and state agencies to collectively improve access to behavioral health care as well as employ preventive steps to reduce the overall need for services.
- Prescribe Safe Initiative Series
- Breaking Down Mental Health: Disparities in Access to Mental Health Services
- Vanderbilt University Medical Center: New Approaches to Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome
- Rural Report Podcast: Behavioral Health
- Webinar: Frameworks and an Innovative Initiative to Advance Well-Being During and After a Pandemic: The National Taskforce for Humanity in Healthcare (NTH) proposes a new model that goes beyond burnout prevention and promotes resiliency and the restoration of humanity in healthcare. During this webinar participants will hear how to move beyond the prevention of burnout, and instead systemically cultivate human thriving and connection in ways that promote resilience, well-being, and joy for all health care team members. Speakers will share lessons learned from deploying the NTH Solutions for Thriving Blueprint.
- Webinar: Mental Health First Aid in Health Care: Helping All of Us be Better Humans: This webinar will provide understanding, resources and strategies on the basics of trauma, recognizing signs and symptoms of common mental health concerns, and how to access appropriate support. Mental health cannot be an afterthought in coping with a pandemic and this webinar will introduce you to basic skills needed to support health care employee wellbeing in this new environment and beyond.
- Video Series: Arizona hospital uses social media to help with behavioral health care during pandemic: Summit Healthcare, a nonprofit medical center in rural Navajo County in Arizona, launched a video series on the hospital's YouTube channel about managing stress during these unprecedented and unnerving times. Read more about the resource that uses a Navajo story to make the resource highly relevant to its audience.
- Be the Employer of Choice for Behavioral Health: Lessons from Inova Kellar Center
- The Physician Wellbeing Playbook
- Integrating Behavioral Health and Primary Care: Atrium Health.
- Behavioral health integration promotes value: Sheppard Pratt & Greater Baltimore Medical Center, MD
- ED behavioral health suite better serves patients: Good Samaritan Hospital, Lebanon, PA
- Psychiatric clinic expands access to behavioral health care: Broadlawns Medical Center, Des Moines
- Medical center program promotes behavioral health: St. Jude Medical Center, Fullerton, CA
- Leading Through Crisis: A Resource Compendium for Nurse Leaders: AONL has developed a compendium of leadership resources to support clinicians in caring for themselves and their teams, including brief exercises for practical tips and effective strategies for coping, staying centered, building resilience and leading with integrity amidst challenging circumstances.
- Case Study: Caring for our Health Care Heroes During Covid-19: This resource focuses on three areas – mental health, food and housing – and features case examples from across the country. It also provides a list of national well-being programs and resources developed for health care workers.
- The Physician Well-Being Playbook
- Chair File: New Resources for Strong Mental Well-being: May is Mental Health Awareness Month—an opportunity for us all to reflect on the effects COVID-19 has had on our mental health and well-being. The AHA is making this issue a priority and supporting the field on a number of fronts.
- AHA Blog: Meeting behavioral health needs of seniors during COVID-19: Brent Forester, M.D., chief of the Center of Excellence in Geriatric Psychiatry at McLean Hospital in Massachusetts, discusses how and why we should pay special attention to older Americans who may be suffering from COVID-19, separated from loved ones or lost important routines.
- Chairman’s File: AHA Board Chair Brian Gragnolati on Behavioral Health
- Technology in behavioral health care: Expanding access, improving quality
- It’s time to increase access to behavioral health care