DETROIT, Sept. 26, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The University of Maryland, Baltimore School of Social Work, Screening for Mental Health and Man Therapy today announced the launch of HealthyMenMichigan.org as part of a statewide campaign to keep middle-aged men who are more likely to die by suicide from slipping through the cracks. The campaign combines the knowledge and best practices of Screening for Mental Health and Man Therapy, leaders in the development and provision of online innovative screening, referrals and online support programs to encourage middle-aged men to access help and improve their emotional well-being.
HealthyMenMichigan.org will offer free online mental health screenings, educational information, and comprehensive local, statewide and national mental health, suicide, substance use and crisis resources. The campaign focuses on depression and suicide, but also includes access to anonymous screenings for substance use, anxiety, eating disorders and posttraumatic stress.
"The stigma present around seeking help for mental health issues is pervasive, particularly for men. Men in Michigan are no different. HealthyMenMichigan.org is a great campaign that will allow men in our state to begin thinking about problems they may be having in a different light," said Patricia K. Smith, Violence Prevention Program Coordinator, Injury & Violence Prevention, Michigan Department of Health & Human Services.
Suicide is ranked as one of the top 10 causes of death in Michigan, and has risen by nearly 40% since 2000. The most significant increase has been found in middle-aged men. The CDC's National Center for Health Statistics reports a 43% increase in the rate of suicide among men ages 45-64 (Curtain, Warner and Hedegaard, 2016).
The campaign is part of a larger research effort led by Dr. Jodi Jacobson Frey at the University of Maryland, Baltimore, School of Social Work. Frey stresses the need to "evaluate innovative online programs to see what actually works for men with regard to reducing suicide ideation and behaviors." To learn more about the voluntary evaluation study, visit http://ssw.umaryland.edu/healthymenmichigan/.
About University of Maryland, Baltimore, School of Social Work
The University of Maryland, Baltimore, School of Social Work is a highly-ranked institution that produces outstanding social workers whose practice advances the well-being of all the people they serve, especially members of populations at risk. U.S. News & World Report ranks the School 17th in their 2016 list of Best Graduate Schools in America. Part of a public university in a diversified state and region, the School promotes social and economic justice in all of its activities. The School provides professional leadership through its programs of education, practice, research, scholarship, service innovation, consultation, and advocacy. For more information about the School of Social Work, visit http://ssw.umaryland.edu/.
About Screening for Mental Health
Screening for Mental Health, the pioneer of large-scale mental health screening for the public, provides innovative mental health and substance use resources, linking those in need with quality treatment options. Its programs, offered online and in-person, educate, raise awareness and screen individuals for common mental health disorders and suicide. Thousands of organizations worldwide utilize the educational and screening programs, and in turn, have reached millions of people ranging from teenagers to adults. For more information about Screening for Mental Health, visit http://mentalhealthscreening.org.
About Man Therapy
Man Therapy is an online program, which uses humor and 'manspeak' to try to break through barriers that many men enlist when confronted with mental and/or public health promotion programs and materials. Man Therapy is designed to be an engaging, approachable, and safe resource for men to explore their mental health and access a variety of strategies and resources for engaging in mental health and support services. More information about Man Therapy can be found on their website, http://mantherapy.org.
This research is supported by the Cooperative Agreement Number, 1 U01 CE002661-01, funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the Department of Health and Human Services.
Curtin, S. C., Warner, M., & Hedegaard, H. (2016). Increase in Suicide in the United States, 1999-2014. NCHS data brief, (241), 1-8.
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SOURCE Screening for Mental Health