May is Mental Health Month – 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. Hospitals also are creating unique partnerships to address behavioral health issues in non-traditional ways.

Each Wednesday during May, come back for stories about how hospitals and health care systems are removing barriers to mental health care, partnering with their communities and reducing the stigma that often surrounds behavioral health disorders. Hospitals’ efforts to improve population health will be enhanced even more when we address and overcome both the stigma and access issues that keep people from getting the treatment they need.

For more information on behavioral health and hospitals, check out AHA.org and AHA’s Section for Psychiatric & Substance Abuse Services.