Mental health and substance use disorders are key public health issues and have received increased national attention in recent years. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, a growing share of people report poor mental health and deaths due to drug overdose have reached record highs. Alongside these worsening issues, challenges with accessing mental health and substance use services have persisted. Poor mental health and barriers to care can vary geographically and by population characteristics. This page highlights relevant findings on the mental health landscape, including state-level data and analyses at the demographic level.
Featured Mental Health Resources
This brief discusses federal mental health parity protections — what they are, who they apply to, who enforces them and key policy issues as Congress and federal agencies evaluate improvements to the law to address gaps in mental health coverage and access.
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Related Mental Health Resources
- A Look at Suicide Rates Ahead of 988 Launch—A National Three-Digit Suicide Prevention Hotline
- FAQs on Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Coverage in Medicare
- Recent Trends in Mental Health and Substance Use Concerns Among Adolescents
- Demographics and Health Insurance Coverage of Nonelderly Adults With Mental Illness and Substance Use Disorders in 2020
- April 26 Web Event: The Future of Mental Health Coverage & Access
- Telehealth Has Played an Outsized Role Meeting Mental Health Needs During the COVID-19 Pandemic
- Mental Health and Substance Use State Fact Sheets
- The Implications of COVID-19 for Mental Health and Substance Use
- KFF COVID-19 Vaccine Monitor: Views On The Pandemic At Two Years
- How Does Use of Mental Health Care Vary by Demographics and Health Insurance Coverage?
- Substance Use Issues Are Worsening Alongside Access to Care
- Mental Health and Substance Use Considerations Among Children During the COVID-19 Pandemic
The recent mass shootings in Uvalde and Buffalo have catalyzed discussion around mental health and gun policy. In the same week that the federal Bipartisan Safer Communities Act was signed strengthening background checks for young adults, adding incentives for red flag laws, and reducing access to guns for individuals with a domestic violence history, the Supreme Court struck down New York’s “proper cause” requirement for concealed carry allowances. In this issue brief, we use the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Wonder database and the State Firearm Law Database to examine the association between suicide deaths by firearm and the number of state-level firearm law provisions.
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Analysis: Before ACA Benefits Rules, Care for Maternity, Mental Health, Substance Abuse Most Often Uncovered by Non-Group Health Plans
Three in four health plans in the non-group insurance market did not cover delivery and inpatient maternity care in 2013, before the Affordable Care Act (ACA) essential health benefits requirement took effect, finds a new Kaiser Family Foundation analysis. Other major benefits most often left uncovered before the ACA include…
This primer provides an overview of behavioral health care, reviews the sources of financing for such care, assesses the interaction between different payers, and highlights recent policy debates in mental health. It also discusses the role of Medicaid, currently the largest source of financing for behavioral health services in the…
Loneliness and Social Isolation in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Japan: An International Survey
To understand more about how people view the issue of loneliness and social isolation, the Kaiser Family Foundation, in partnership with The Economist, conducted a cross-country survey of adults in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Japan. The survey included additional interviews with individuals who report always or often feeling lonely, left out, isolated or that they lack companionship to better understand the personal characteristics and life circumstances associated with these feelings, the reported causes of loneliness, and how people are coping. More than a fifth of adults in the United States and the United Kingdom as well as one in ten adults in Japan say they often or always feel lonely, feel that they lack companionship, feel left out, or feel isolated from others, and many of them say their loneliness has had a negative impact on various aspects of their life. About six in ten say there is a specific cause of their loneliness, and they are also more likely to report experiencing negative life events in the past two years, such as a negative change in financial status. Those reporting loneliness in each country report having fewer confidants than others and two-thirds or more say they have just a few or no relatives or friends living nearby who they can rely on for support. Many in the U.S. and U.K. view the increased use of technology as a major reason why people are lonely or socially isolated, whereas fewer people in Japan say the same. But, for those experiencing loneliness or social isolation personally, they are divided as to whether they think social media makes their feelings of loneliness better or worse.
From Accessing Health Care to Work, Childcare, and Caregiving, the COVID-19 Pandemic Continues to Disproportionately Impact Women
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, gender-based disparities have been amplified, particularly for women of color and those who are low-income. Two new issue briefs, using data from the 2020 KFF Women’s Health Survey that took place in November and December of 2020, examine women’s experiences during COVID-19. Women’s…
KFF/Post Survey Reveals the Serious Mental Health Challenges Facing Frontline Health Care Workers a Year into the COVID-19 Pandemic
About 1 in 6 Tested Positive for COVID-19, though Few Experienced Major Symptoms; Those Working in Nursing Homes or Assisted Living Facilities Most Likely to Report Testing Positive More than a year into the COVID-19 pandemic, a majority of frontline health care workers say the crisis is taking a toll…
This annual survey of employers provides a detailed look at trends in employer-sponsored health coverage, including premiums, worker contributions, cost-sharing provisions, offer rates, and more. This year’s report also looks at how employers changed their mental health, telemedicine and other benefits in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Average Family Premiums Rose 4% This Year to Top $22,000; Employers Boost Mental Health and Telemedicine amid COVID-19 Pandemic, Benchmark KFF Survey Finds
Annual family premiums for employer-sponsored health insurance rose 4% to average $22,221 this year, according to the 2021 benchmark KFF Employer Health Benefits Survey released today. On average, workers this year are contributing $5,969 toward the cost of family coverage, with employers paying the rest. This year’s survey also assesses…
Half of Parents of Adolescents 12-17 Say Their Child Has Gotten a COVID-19 Vaccine, though Uptake Has Slowed; 16% of Parents of 5-11 Year-olds Say Their Child Has Gotten a Vaccine
COVID-19 vaccine uptake among adolescents ages 12-17 has slowed after an initial wave of enthusiasm over the summer, with half (49%) of parents saying their adolescent has received at least one dose, a new KFF COVID-19 Vaccine Monitor report reveals. The share is little changed since earlier in the fall.…
As California ramps up its CalAIM initiative, the state will incorporate and transition its Whole Person Care pilot program’s services statewide through the state’s Medicaid managed care system. This brief examines the lessons from those pilots in coordinating and integrating physical health, behavioral health, and social services.