Suicide Prevention in New York State: We Can Make a Difference But We Need All Hands on Deck!

Suicide is a public health crisis that demands our collective attention. Over the past two decades, while we have seen major forms of mortality like heart disease, stroke, and cancer decline, suicide rates have steadily increased both in the United States and New York State (NYS). Since 2000 the...

Managing Anxiety and Protecting the Vulnerable in the Midst of a Pandemic

Who could have predicted last Thanksgiving how fundamentally different our lives would become in the months ahead? The way we work, shop, and socialize have all changed dramatically, as have the ways in which healthcare providers serve our patients. [caption id="attachment_5493"...

Treating Individuals with Both Opioid Addiction and Mental Illness

As we work to address the nation’s opioid crisis, we must recognize that a disproportionate share of prescription painkillers is being consumed by people with anxiety and depression. We at the New York State Office of Mental Health (OMH) are partnering with the Office of Alcohol and Substance...

The Importance of Housing for People on the Road to Recovery

Housing is a critical factor in anyone’s overall health. Good-quality, affordable and safe housing is a vital component for individuals living with mental illness. Housing that enables individuals to live in fully integrated settings in their home communities is the cornerstone for successful...

New York State Office of Mental Health Using Medication-Assisted Treatment and Other Resources to Fight the Opioid Epidemic

Every day, more than 130 people die in the United States as a result of opioid overdose. The opioid abuse epidemic has become a national public health crisis with devastating economic, societal and human costs. People with mental illnesses served in the public mental health system have...

Project TEACH Integrates Behavioral Health Care into Primary Care for Children and New Mothers

Parents seeking help or information about their child’s emotional or behavioral health often turn first to their pediatrician or their primary care provider (PCP). Unfortunately, family practice doctors often do not have the training needed to make decisions for children with mental health needs,...

New Mental Health Parity Laws in New York State

About one in five New Yorkers require behavioral health services, but many do not receive treatment because of a lack of access to insurance coverage. More than 10 years ago, the federal Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act required large group health plans that provide mental health...

Reaching Out to Meet the Mental Health Needs of the Aging

There are more than with 3.7 million individuals aged 60 and older in New York State. It’s expected that this number will increase to 4.63 million by 2040. At the same time, the number of older adults with mental illness will increase by 80 percent, to 900,000. Studies have shown that the...

Medicaid Redesign Will Help Children and Families Get the Right Services at the Right Time

New York State embarked on a large-scale effort in 2011 to restructure the State’s Medicaid program based on recommendations from the Governor-appointed Medicaid Redesign Team (MRT). The MRT was comprised of a wide variety of stakeholders, including State agencies, providers, advocates, consumers...

Responding to the Mental Health Needs of the Aging

Aging is an inevitable part of life. As we get older, we often think of physical problems such an aching back or pain in our knees. But the elderly also have considerable mental health needs, as well. Here at the Office of Mental Health (OMH), we’ve been looking at innovative interventions to...