By: Lindsay Anderson
A new year means a new budget for America. The HR2029 budget bill of 2016 has been given and Mental Health has seen an increase of $400 Million Dollars. That sounds like a huge amount of money when America is in a financial deficit that seems to be increasing every second. And even with this increase for Mental Health many question what and where does the money go?
First, let’s talk about the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). If you have ever wondered where the bulk of the funds go it is to this institute. The NIMH is the lead federal agency that administers research on mental disorders. There are 27 Institutes and Center that play a part in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) which is the nation’s medical research agency. NIMH does research on major diseases like Anxiety, Bipolar Disorder, Depression and many other disorders. The test examine everything from cellular, molecular, behavioral, brain function and clinical investigations.
So knowing what they do, how does all of the research and testing weigh to actually getting treatment out to consumers? Well that goes hand and hand with each state. Each state also receives a funds and they can disperse the funds as they see fit. The problem is most states don’t see Mental Health research as a valuable piece of information. With the rise in Suicide( 12.9 per 100,000) and now the 10th leading cause of death prevention and treatment should be a top priority.
There are also other programs that receive money underneath this increase, programs like new Project AWARE with $49.9 million ( +$10 million ) or the Mental Health Block Grant program which receive a $50 million increase. And with the newly additional funds there is also some new requirements to ensure that research and data findings are concentrated on evidence-based plans that are geared to serious mental illnesses.
Hopefully with new programs and increased cash there will a larger focus on advocacy from consumers and non consumers alike. It doesn’t matter how much money is being used to gather resourceful information to treat these illness if we don’t begin to seek the help that is needed. There are so many programs and initiatives that are cut every year and if we don’t voice the severity of mental wellness, I am fearful that millions will continue to decline in the future.
To find out more information on the 2016 FY Budget <—- CLICK HERE
Lindsay Anderson is the Editor-In-Chief and Founder of ConsciouslyCoping.org, a Mental Wellness social media site that primarily focuses on educating minorities, underprivileged and lower income based families on healthy approaches of managing Mental Illnesses.
President Barack Obama on Mental Health and Dropping the Stigma