Mental Health Month: Facts of the Day

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(From Mental Health Association in Greensboro)

Not Investing in Mental Health Is Expensive

  • The total yearly cost for mental illness in both the private and public sector in the United States is $205 billion – but only $92 billion of that total comes from direct treatment costs. The total cost of untreated and mistreated mental illness to American businesses, the government, and to families is $113 billion every year.
  • Employees who are depressed are twice as likely to take time off for health reasons than employees who are not depressed, and are seven times more likely to be less productive on the job than their counterparts.
  • The success rate for treating clinical depression is nearly 80 percent.
  • Treating people in communities is far less expensive than treating them in institutions. In one recent study, the total treatment cost per person per year, including the cost of housing, was $60,000 compared to $130,000 for institutional care.
  • Twenty percent of youths in juvenile justice facilities have a serious emotional disturbance and have a mental disorder that can be diagnosed. Up to an additional 30 percent of youths in these facilities have substance abuse disorders or co-occurring mental health and substance abuse disorders.
  • On any given night, more than 600,000 people are homeless in the United States , of which one-third have a serious mental illness.
  • The World Health Organization estimates that depression and substance abuse are associated with more than 90 percent of all suicide cases.
  • According to the World Health Organization in their 1998 report, depression will be the second greatest cause of premature death and disability worldwide by the year 2020.

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