States need to prepare for anticipated mental health crisis in rural America

The Daily Yonder reports on a recent analysis from Well Being Trust and the Robert Graham Center for Policy Studies in Family Medicine and Primary Care that predicts an increase in rural suicides as a result of the pandemic and recession. The study used 2018 data and found that a 1% increase in the unemployment rate was associated with a 1-1.6% increase in suicides. On top of economic challenges and the isolation caused by social distancing, rural areas tend to have less access to specialized mental health supports—over half of rural America receives their mental health care through a primary care provider. Researchers suggest that states should prepare to undertake these challenges by addressing the effects of unemployment, increasing access to care, and further integrating care. #covid-19 #rural #mentalhealth

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