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May 7, 2013 spotlights Mental Health Awareness Month spotlights Mental Health Awareness Month spotlights Mental Health Awareness Month

May was designated National Mental Health Awareness Month in 1949 by the United States Congress due to the increased number of veterans suffering from mental illnesses after returning from World War II. Mental health issues affect many people in the United States, regardless of military experience, and the Federal government recognizes the importance of educating and treating those citizens who are living with mental health issues. If you have any specific questions regarding mental health, make sure you check out The National Institute of Mental Health, which hosts a large amount of information on a variety of mental illnesses.

Managed by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) aims to reduce the impact of substance abuse and mental illness on America's communities. SAMHSA does its part to raise awareness of, and action around, substance abuse and mental health issues by observing National Prevention Week from May 10 to May 20.

National Prevention Week is a public education platform that promotes prevention by bringing communities and organizations from across the country together to raise awareness of the importance of substance use prevention and positive mental health. is here to assist you or your loved ones in your search for mental health services. Here are just a few programs that may help:

Community Mental Health Services Block Grant

The Community Mental Health Services Block Grant is dedicated to improving public mental health service systems across the country. The grant helps build and support the community-based public mental health system for adults with serious mental illness (SMI) and children with severe emotional disturbance (SED). In order to qualify for this benefit program, you or your family or household members must be facing a mental illness.For additional information, please see SAMHSA's Mental Health Services Grants Page

Mental Health Services

The Mental Health Services Programmanaged by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides general inpatient psychiatric services as well as mental health outpatient services for eligible applicants. Many of these services are being integrated into primary health care clinics, nursing homes, and residential care facilities where veterans receive mental health care. Veterans with serious mental illness are seen at all facilities and clinics where specialized programs, such as mental health intensive case management, day centers, work programs and psychosocial rehabilitation are provided.

Protection and Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness

The Protection and Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness is administered by SAMHSA and the Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS). PAIMI provides grants which are used by protection and advocacy systems to investigate incidents of abuse and neglect on behalf of individuals with mental illness in a public or private facility rendering care or treatment. These grants also insure laws are followed and that victims have the proper avenues to pursue legal avenues.

To search and view more benefits relating to mental health, take our Benefit Finder questionnaire or browse our Healthcare and Medical Assistance category. 

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