Law Enforcement in New Mexico have shared stories about our failed Mental Health system.
"I've taken people in for a 72-hour psychiatric hold that desperately need help, and by the time I do the paperwork and drive back, they have already been released."
We do not have the resources in New Mexico to help our mentally ill and suicidal people, and this is unacceptable.
Things we can do:
Depression in New Mexico
The New Mexico Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) estimated 9.8% of New Mexico adults were suffering from depression in 2016. According to results from the 2014-2015 National Survey of Drug Use and Health, 11.5% of New Mexico youth 12-17 years had a major depressive episode in the last 12 months.
Prevention programs have been shown to reduce depressive symptoms, both in children and adults, and there are also effective treatments. Mild to moderate depression can be effectively treated with talk therapies, e.g., cognitive behavior therapy, while antidepressant medications can be an effective form of treatment for moderate to severe depression. However, antidepressant medications should not be used for treating depression in children and should be used with caution in adolescents.
Other Factors to Consider
Results from the BRFSS also show that depression is strongly related to education, employment and income. College graduates suffered from depression the least (6.4%) compared to those who did not complete high school (13.8%). People who were retired or employed had much lower rates of depression (5.8% and 6.7%, respectively) than those who were unemployed (15.4%) or unable to work (37.8%). Depression was much less common among adults with household incomes of $75,000 or more (5.0%) than among those with household incomes of less than $15,000 (19.5%). (1)
Drug Addiction and Overdose
In 2017, there were 332 overdose deaths involving opioids in New Mexico—a rate of 16.7 deaths per 100,000 persons compared to the average national rate of 14.6 deaths per 100,000 persons. Prescription opioids were involved in most deaths in 2017 with 171, followed by heroin with 144, and synthetic opioids other than methadone (mainly fentanyl) with 75 deaths. Deaths have not significantly changed over the last several years. (2)
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