Governor Tom Wolf proclaimed May Mental Health Awareness Month
Today, the Department of Human Services (DHS) in collaboration with PA System of Care Partnership, PA Healthy Transitions Partnership, and Youth M.O.V.E. PA, hosted the 2017 Mental Health Awareness Fair in Harrisburg to raise awareness and understanding of mental illness and substance use disorders. Governor Tom Wolf has proclaimed May Mental Health Awareness Month.
"Mental illness and substance use disorders affect Pennsylvanians from all walks of life. Only about half of those people, however, seek treatment,” said DHS Secretary Ted Dallas. “The department is committed to increasing awareness and providing quality care to these individuals so that all Pennsylvanians who need help can get it.”
Representative Mike Schlossberg (D-Lehigh) joined the event to speak about the challenges he has seen in trying to reduce the stigma associated with mental illness.
“No person with mental illness should ever feel alone,” said Representative Schlossberg. “Events like these are more important than ever because we have to make sure that everyone who suffers from mental illness has the chance to obtain treatment and live healthy, productive, and happy lives.”
To help individuals gain access to treatment, DHS was recently awarded a Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC) demonstration grant by the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. CCBHCs will enhance access to behavioral health services for Medicaid and CHIP beneficiaries, help individuals with mental illness and substance use disorders obtain the health care they need, allow individuals to have access to a wide array of services at one location, and remove the barriers that too often exist across physical and behavioral health systems. CCBHCs are a step closer to ending the stigma associated with mental illness.
Each mental illness has its own set of symptoms but some common signs of mental illness can include the following:
For more information on how to access mental health services, click here.