Leveraging technological advances to make better use of the best available data could help rein in healthcare costs and improve both quality and safety. This makes sense whether the healthcare being delivered is physical or behavioral.
The American Health Care Act passed by the U.S. House of Representatives to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act allows states to waive benefits that the ACA deemed “essential.” Dropping maternity care coverage, for example, would reduce premiums by 5 percent but increase out-of-pocket spending for new mothers.
New technologies for capturing and sharing data have begun to transform the way providers practice medicine in the United States. Expanding these technologies to behavioral health care could enhance the delivery of services and improve outcomes for millions of Americans.
Too few of the veterans who experience mental health issues get the help they need. Even fewer get the right care. Closing these gaps will require raising awareness about the barriers to care, and changing how the mental health care system is organized and delivers services.
Clozapine has proven effective for patients with treatment-resistant schizophrenia, but the health system is poorly configured to provide it. The drug has possible side effects that require extra patient monitoring, but it saves costs by reducing hospitalizations.
The United States has made life-saving progress on crisis support for veterans. Now other suicide prevention services need help. Progress made by the VA could provide a blueprint for improving suicide prevention services for all Americans.
New guidelines from the American College of Physicians favor behavioral therapy over meds as the first-line treatment for insomnia. However, the ACP's recommendation will not in itself raise the level of access to optimal care for insomnia patients.
This weekend marks 10 years since Hurricane Katrina ravaged the Gulf Coast. As the region struggled to cope and rebuild after the storm, RAND experts worked on solutions to the region's long-term challenges.
Reaching veterans to learn more about their mental health care seeking poses a conundrum. They are typically recruited for studies in clinical settings, so those who are not seeking care are not represented. Facebook may be a viable method to reach them.
Depression is the leading cause of disability throughout the world and is especially prevalent among low-income African countries, where 75 percent of the people who suffer from mental illness do not have easy access to the mental health care they need.
If mental health problems are the most significant barrier preventing people on benefits from taking up employment, then why not transform how the system supports them? Policymakers could redirect some of the resources available to the benefit system towards improving mental health outcomes, and put more evidence-based interventions in place. The savings to the benefit system should logically pay for this investment.
Collaborative care has been an important part of Army efforts to reach out to those struggling with PTSD and depression. It has brought a science-based solution to an essential military problem and has helped thousands of men and women in uniform in ways that also nudge the larger mental health system toward greater effectiveness for all Americans.
Mental health stigma exists across American society, but the problem in the military is fundamentally different. It boils down to the jarring and institutionalized military failure to place adequate boundaries between the workplace and the therapist's office.
Last week, President Obama signed a bill to overhaul care provided by the Veterans Health Administration. This is an important step, but attention to veterans' experiences receiving care, particularly veterans in need of mental health and substance use care, should be an essential component to ongoing efforts to improve quality.
What's happening in the mental health world of the U.S. military and veterans is of great interest to all American psychiatrists. The local impact of recent deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan runs much deeper than just the number of veterans in a particular practice or community.
Not all veterans wish to seek services at or through the VA, and many may not meet eligibility criteria. The VA is a critical component of the health care delivery system for former U.S. servicemembers, but it cannot and should not comprise the system alone.
A promising strategy for helping adults with serious mental illness gain access to appropriate primary and preventive medical services is to integrate those services into a setting in which the population already receives care.
Ret. Gen. Peter Chiarelli, who was Army vice chief of staff, discusses why he disagrees with the idea that the post-traumatic stress soldiers suffer is a disorder with RAND president and CEO Michael Rich at RAND's Politics Aside event.
In our national conversation on mental health, we should remember the role of families when thinking about treatment and ensure that our policies open up opportunities to support parents, siblings and relatives, and enhance their capacity for care, writes Ramya Chari.
With an event like this, With an event like this, 'recovery' doesn't mean a return to normal, because lives have been permanently altered. Recovery can only mean finding a new normal, a new path forward. And schools, those places of safety and healthy development, can help with that process, by providing a structure and community to support healing, writes Lisa Jaycox.
As Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Awareness Day approaches on June 27th, policymakers continue to look for ways to best help our nation's servicemembers and veterans with PTSD and other combat related mental health problems.
The impact of violence and trauma on children has led RAND and its partners to focus not only on studying the problem, but working collaboratively to find interventions that help address a significant public health need.
In recognition of National Mental Health Month, May 2012, we spotlight posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and RAND's work to advance understanding and treatment of this condition, which affects many more people than is commonly thought.