Texas Slides to Last for Access to Mental Health Care

DALLAS (Oct. 19, 2021) As mental health concerns and needs continue to rise, Texas is once again last in the nation for access to mental health care, according to The 2022 State of Mental Health in America, Mental Health America's [MHA] annual national report released this week. Previously, Texas ranked #50 of 51 on access to mental health care in 2020 and 2021 in that report. Equally troubling, MHA's August
2021 report, The
Severe Depression and Covid-19: Communities in Need Across the U.S. scored Dallas County #6 nationally in suicidal ideation and #10 in severe depression among large counties. Moreover, just this past week, Dallas County is in the top 20 large counties with post-traumatic stress disorder risk per MHA's TRAUMA AND COVID-19: Communities In Need Across the U.S. report. The PTSD and trauma data indicate acute and long-lasting mental health effects, including chronic anxiety and depression.

Only attending to a mental health crisis in a time of emergency is not a sustainable way to foster healthy and thriving communities. While state and federal leaders continue working for more equitable access to mental health care, MHA-Greater Dallas is proactively responding to our community's mental health care needs with a new program, Workplace Wellness Initiative.

MHA-Greater Dallas's Workplace Wellness Initiative helps companies and their employees foster mentally healthy workplaces and advocate for internal mental health supports, including mental health care benefits, teletherapy options, and team member assistance programs. Additionally, MHA-Greater Dallas offers free and confidential online mental health screenings at mhadallas.org/help.

Individuals or caregivers needing immediate mental health counseling and services can call the North Texas Behavioral Health Authority [NTBHA] 24/7 Crisis Hotline 866-260-8000 or 24/7 COVID-19 Mental Health Support Line 833-251-7544. And nationally, text "MHA" to 741-741; the Crisis Text Line is free, anonymous, and provides 24/7 connection with a trained Crisis Counselor. For life-threatening
emergencies, including threats or injury to self or others, call 911 immediately.

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