Blog


Landslide

Democrats and Republicans shared a victory yesterday. There’s a sentence you don’t often see. But that’s what happened last night in Eagle County. More than 10,000 people in Eagle County experience a mental health or substance use disorder each year, yet the county dedicates no resources to treatment. A bipartisan coalition set out to change that, proposing a tax on the sale and production of recreational marijuana. The result: nearly 74% of voters supported Issue 1A. We’re proud to have been part of the winning team. But we have far more work to ...

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No waiting

“Is this likely to get better anytime soon?” At a meeting in Eagle on Tuesday, a commissioner asked me whether her county should wait for the federal government to improve mental health care. Two days later, the President issued an executive order that jeopardizes coverage for mental health and substance use services and for Americans with preexisting conditions. “Madam Chair,” I replied, “I’d say if you’re waiting for Washington to help, this will be a very long meeting.” The good news: Eagle County isn’t waiting. The commissioners approved a ...

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Cha-ching

The Graham-Cassidy bill—a last-ditch attempt to repeal Obamacare—died this week. But one of its sponsors delivered a remarkably revealing eulogy. Sen. Lindsey Graham lamented not only the series of legislative defeats but also the toll they had taken on his party’s finances. “Online giving went down 40 percent after we failed on health care,” he told Politico. “Pledges went down 60 percent.” Graham wasn’t the only lawmaker to fret about the politics of health care reform; he was just the most candid. He described GOP donors as his “employers.” ...

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Less than a minute

It will take you less than a minute to read this. By the time you’re done, two Americans will have attempted suicide. Within an hour, five will have died. By Saturday—when National Suicide Prevention Week comes to an end—20 people will have taken their lives in Colorado alone. Those are the facts. They do little justice to the agony that drives so many to suicide, or the anguish they leave behind. The good news: There are steps we can take to prevent suicide. Spot the warning signs. Call or text Colorado Crisis Services. Learn how you can help. It will ...

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31 Tips to Boost Your Mental Health

Track gratitude and achievement with a journal. Include 3 things you were grateful for and 3 things you were able to accomplish each day. Start your day with a cup of co­ffee. Coff­ee consumption is linked to lower rates of depression. If you can’t drink coff­ee because of the caffeine, try another good-for-you drink like green tea. Set up a getaway. It could be camping with friends or a trip to the tropics. The act of planning a vacation and having something to look forward to can boost your overall happiness for up to 8 weeks! Work your strengths. Do ...

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And the nominees are…

Turn on the news lately, and you might feel like the comedian Richard Lewis. Whenever his mother calls, she always asks, “Is everything all wrong?” If you can make it past the headlines (and the punchlines), you can find a few bits of good news. That’s what we’re asking you to do, right now: help us identify and celebrate success. Specifically, we’re asking you to nominate Coloradans who are making a difference in the field of mental health. We’ll honor the winners at our annual Tribute Gala on Oct. 28. This year, we’re seeking nominations in three ...

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Statement by Paul Gionfriddo, president and CEO of Mental Health America, on the Better Care Reconciliation Act

"The Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA) falls far short of what is needed and will ultimately do significant harm to people with all chronic conditions, including mental illnesses, while increasing the cost of health care to everyone. "While it leaves in place the Affordable Care Act (ACA) requirement that insurers cover pre-existing conditions, it does not require insurance products to include all essential benefits. This means that while people with mental health conditions would be able to obtain insurance, the insurance would not include all the services they ...

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This just in

What’s six hours old, 142 pages long, and capable of changing one-sixth of the American economy? If you guessed the “Better Care Reconciliation Act,” you’re right. Senate Republicans just released their plan to repeal and replace Obamacare. That gives us one week to weigh in on the proposal before the Senate is expected to vote on it. We oppose many of the provisions we’ve seen, including threats to mental health and substance use services -- which insurers might no longer have to cover as essential benefits -- and deep cuts to Medicaid. We want to hear ...

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A critical gap

How do we recruit more mental health professionals -- and retain those we have? Those questions gained new urgency this month. A severe staffing shortage has plunged Colorado’s largest psychiatric hospital into turmoil. Federal regulators have told the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo that its conditions pose an “immediate and serious threat to the health and safety of patients.” The institute will lose an estimated $12 million in Medicare and Medicaid funding -- roughly 13 percent of its total operating budget -- on June 28 unless it implements ...

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Men’s Health Month: Man Therapy

The statistics say it all: working-age men (25-64 years old) account for the largest number of suicide deaths in the United States. They are four times more likely than women to die from suicide. These men are also the least likely to receive support – they don’t talk about their experiences with friends and family or ask professionals for help, according to the Colorado Office of Suicide Prevention. During Men’s Health Month in June, Mental Health Colorado wants to focus on changing this mindset. Men must talk about their feelings. A local advertising firm, ...

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