Americans are struggling with mental health. Nationwide, more people are taking prescription mental health medication, anxiety and depression levels are rising, suicidal ideation is increasing and 11% of people with a mental illness don’t have insurance. There are, however, some states that are at the forefront of mental health care. Our team of analysts found that these states have both high access to mental health care and low numbers of people without health insurance.
- Connecticut, Maryland and Massachusetts have the best mental health care
- 21% of Americans have a mental health issue
- 11% of people received mental health care this year
- 11% of people with a mental health illness didn’t receive care this year
To determine the best states for mental health care, our analysts looked at five key factors:
- Prevalence of mental illness in each state
- Access to mental health care
- The number of people who have received care
- The number of people who needed care but didn’t get it
- Mental illness and health insurance
We found that Connecticut has the best mental health care in the nation. The state has a high degree of access to care, a low number of uninsured residents with mental health issues and a low number of people who weren't able to utilize mental health services.
Mental illness is incredibly common in the United States. One in 5 adults experienced a mental illness prior to the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Many of these illnesses are left untreated. Half of the people with a mental health illness do not receive treatment, and nearly 25% say they have not been able to get the care they need.
The consequences for this lack of treatment cannot be overstated. Suicide rates are up 30% since 1999, and more than 90% of people who committed suicide showed symptoms of mental health issues.
Insurance is a major factor when it comes to receiving mental health care. We found a direct correlation between the number of people who didn’t receive mental health care and the number of people who had a mental illness but did not have insurance. Oregon, for example, had the second-highest percentage of people who did not receive care and the second-highest percentage of people without insurance.
Having insurance is key because under the Affordable Care Act, most health insurance plans must also include coverage for mental health services and substance abuse.
|State||% with a mental illness||% of people who received care||% of people who didn’t receive care||% of people without insurance*|
|* This represents the percentage of people with a mental health illness who also do not have insurance|
Mental Health Resources
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
- 1 (866) 615-6464
- NIMH website
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
- 1 (800) 662 - 4357 (24hrs)
- SAMHSA website
National Alliance on Mental Illness
- 1 (800) 950 - 6264
States were evaluated based on data from Mental Health America and the United States Census Bureau Household Pulse Survey. Overall rankings were determined by a composite score based upon access to care, insurance rates and the prevalence of mental illness within each state.
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