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90% of US adults think country in mental health crisis: Poll

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Oct 05, 2022 - 09:38 PM

WASHINGTON (AA) – Nearly all Americans believe the country is in the midst of a national mental health crisis, a new poll released Wednesday suggests.

Roughly 9 in 10 adults agreed when asked if the US is currently in a mental health crisis, according to the CNN/Kaiser Family Foundation survey. Just 9% said the US is not in a mental health crisis while 1% said they do not know, or refused to answer.

About one in five respondents said they would describe their personal mental health as being only fair or poor. Under half, 46%, described their mental health or emotional well-being as excellent or very good.

About half said they have experienced a severe mental health crisis in their families that included in-person treatment of a family member who was a threat to themselves or others, or who was engaged in cutting or other self-harm behaviors.

When asked to rank the severity of several crises facing the country, the opioid epidemic topped the list with 69% of respondents agreeing it is a crisis facing the nation. Mental health issues in children and teens came in second with 55% followed by severe mental illness in adults at 51%.

The poll included 2,000 adults who were questioned during the summer.

Asked about factors contributing to the state of mental health in America, 95% said the cost of mental health care treatment was a problem while 93% said health insurance companies not covering services like physical health is a problem.

Nearly 90% said there are not enough mental health care providers, such as therapists or counselors, who take insurance.

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