U.S Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH) said Friday that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services had awarded nearly $2.3 million to Ohio North East Health Systems, Inc.
The grant will provide operational funding so that more people can have access to high quality, integrative behavioral health services, including treatment for mental health conditions and/or substance use disorders.
“With the COVID-19 pandemic surging, these funds will provide much-needed support in our community. Ohio North East Health System has served Northeast Ohio for over 30-years, and they are deserving of this award, which will allow them to continue to provide health care to the uninsured and underinsured in the Mahoning Valley,” said Congressman Ryan.
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, reports of mental health issues, substance use, and suicidal thoughts have increased dramatically. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 40.9 percent of respondents to a survey reported experiencing mental or behavioral health conditions, including anxiety, depression, and traumatic stress-related disorders. Additionally, nearly 11 percent reported contemplating suicide in the 30 days before the survey. Suicidal ideation was significantly higher amongst young adults (25.5 percent), minority racial and ethnic groups (18.6 percent), unpaid caregivers for adults (30.7 percent), and essential workers (21.7 percent).
Ryan said the funding could also be used for professional development and training, opioid prevention, or the use of telehealth and other health information technologies.