Aug 16, 2017 | Updated: 01:24 PM EDT

Mental Health Care System Disparities Adds On To Mentally Ill People Struggles

Apr 19, 2017 06:47 AM EDT

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A mental health patient looks out of a door at the Mental Care Center of Xining Welfare Institution on March 15, 2006 in Xining of Qinghai Province, China.
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Recently, a new study suggests that while major healthcare reforms in the United States are being implemented, people with mental health conditions still struggles in getting care services from it. Adults with mental illnesses were about 10 times more likely not going to buy their medications as needed because of the cost of these drugs.

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In an article from Live Science, from the journal of Psychiatric Services published on April 17, 2017, adult mental patients were three times more likely to put delays for seeking medical care compared with adults without mental illness. These people are also about three times more likely to visit a doctor and more than 10 times in the past year, for a check-up in their overall health problems

Research results also show that people with mental illness experience more difficulties when they try to access health care. Lead study author Judith Weissman, an epidemiologist at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City said, "Together, these findings suggest that people with mental health conditions are having poorer health relative to people without mental illness".

Men and women can experience depression in diverse ways. Both genders share many common signs and symptoms of mental illness but, a better understanding of its differences helps them in treating their depression.

Depression, as defined in Mayo Clinic, is a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest. This affects how the person feels, thinks and behave and can lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems.

According to Jill Goldstein, director of research at the Connors Center for Women's Health and Gender Biology at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, "We have known about sex differences for years when it comes to depression, and they are essential to understanding the illness". Goldstein also added that women are twice the risk of men in developing depression.

Although people with mental health conditions in the study had more repeating doctor's appointments than those without mental health conditions. They also have to change the location where they would receive medical services during the study mostly because of insurance reasons.

Such events can disrupt treatment plans and relationships with health professionals like physicians, and prevent the people from feeling better. "To improve health care access for people with mental illness, there need to be more links between primary care providers and mental health professionals in the community", Dr. Weissman suggested.


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