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News

Mental health is part of overall health. Explore resources in Douglas County to be well.

Board of Douglas County Commissioners recognizes May 2024 as Mental Health Awareness Month

Posted on May 6, 2024 2024News and Events

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Did you know that in Douglas County, about 18% of people reported poor mental health in 2023? That’s 70,000 residents, according to data from the Colorado Health Institute’s Health Access Survey. Many more Douglas County residents listed better mental health programs as a top priority in the most recent Douglas County Citizen Survey.

Knowing that access to information and resources, as well as community engagement, can help fight the stigma that for too long has surrounded the topic of mental health, the Board of Douglas County Commissioners adopted a resolution at their April 23 Business Meeting recognizing May as Mental Health Awareness Month.

“We just want our community to know that everyone has mental health. It’s okay to pick up the phone and talk with someone,” said Commissioner Lora Thomas. “You are not alone. There is hope and there is a way to get help.”

Nationwide, as many as one in five U.S. adults – and one in six U.S. children – is impacted by a mental health condition each year. If you, a friend, or family member seem to be having more bad days than good, know that it is okay to reach out and ask for help:

In the spring 0f 2014, Douglas County formed the Douglas County Mental Health Initiative to collaboratively address unmet mental health needs. Today, that initiative is more than 50 members strong and includes several programs to help people with mental and behavioral health, including the County’s Community Response Teams.

CRTs have served more than 7,500 people since 2017 and helped prevent more than 1,400 trips to the emergency room for mental health crises and nearly 600 jail bookings. This partnership has saved the County an estimated $10.4 million in fire, emergency medical services and jail costs.

In 2020, the partners launched The Care Compact, which has helped more than 120 adults with complex mental health, substance use, intellectual and developmental disabilities find the support they need.

The Douglas County Mental Health Initiative continues working on multiple strategies to improve the mental health network of care, fill gaps and address the persistent stigma that surrounds mental health conditions and substance use disorder. Learn more about this partnership on our webpage.

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