Utah’s Mental Health Crisis: Ranking 48th In Prevalence And Access To Care
Mental health awareness is always growing but in Utah, the access rate for mental health care isn’t.
Utah is one of the worst-ranked states when it comes to mental health access and numbers in adults, Mental Health America said. In its 2022 findings, Utah was the 48th state with a “higher prevalence of mental illness and lower rates of access to care”.
Though there are efforts being made to improve the state’s mental health care access, specifically for children, the progress is slow. Utah Gov. Spencer Cox has listed suicide prevention and increasing mental health resources as focus points for his term. Cox also declared May 1 Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day with the Children’s Center Utah.
A press release from the Children’s Center Utah (KSL) said:
“Mental health problems can affect anyone, including our children and youth," Cox said. "It's time to prioritize the importance of mental health and raise awareness about the challenges our children can face. Let's all make a commitment to support those struggling with mental, emotional or behavioral issues and create a more compassionate and resilient community."
However, the adult number of mental health issues are just as much of a concern.
Utah’s rate of adults with serious thoughts of suicide is the worst at 6.19 percent. On average, adults in the U.S. report serious thoughts of suicide at 4.58 percent. It’s estimated at 11.4 million people dealing with suicidal thoughts.
The state ranked 40 in unmet needs for mental health care. In the U.S. there are 24.7 percent of those who said they could not get the help they needed. This could be for several reasons including being uninsured, unavailable treatment types, worker shortages, and financial strains.
If you are experiencing mental health concerns or someone you know is, check out these resources https://www.211.org/get-help/mental-health