A survey done by Mental Health America found that out of all the 50 states, Arizona ranks 46th when it comes to mental health access. The survey reviewed and measured factors such as:
- Accessibility to mental health resources and providers
- Barriers to treatment including cultural competency, affordability, and geographic distance to treatment centers
- Knowledge, awareness and utilization of treatment options available in communities across the state
- Socioeconomic characteristics
Paul Gionfriddo, CEO of Mental Health America, says that Arizona’s approach to mental health care is lackluster, stating, “They traditionally wait until there’s a crisis, where people are a danger to themselves or others (before getting them help).”
This is unfortunate. Sometimes people who suffer from a serious mental illness and don’t have full control of their mental faculties are charged with a crime. It seems unfair to punish someone who does not have full control of his or her mental faculties. While it is unfortunate that a crime was committed, jail is not the place to treat mental illness.
A consultant with Mental Health America’s Arizona office says that the survey was taken using statistics from 2012, and that things have improved in Arizona since 2012, when funding for mental health in the state took a big hit because of the recession.
So which state ranked as the best state for mental health care access? Vermont. Nevada was in last place as the worst state for mental health care access.
Read the original article here.