Accreditation

Briefings on Accreditation and Quality, January 2017

Briefings on Accreditation and Quality, January 31, 2017

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In its 2016 Health Index, Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) found that mental disorders and substance abuse are the chief causes of shortened longevity and health in the U.S. The top five conditions cause about 30% of commercially insured Americans' overall reduction in optimal health, and are as follows:
1. Depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders
2. Hypertension
3. Diabetes
4. High cholesterol
5. Substance use disorders

The index compares 200 different conditions using millions of BCBS claims, along with healthcare costs and global burden of the disease, to find out which ones have the largest impact on quality of life and health. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), roughly 43.6 million adult Americans experienced some form of mental illness and 20.2 million had a substance abuse disorder in 2014. And of these two groups, 7.9 million had both a mental disorder and substance abuse disorder.

American Psychiatric Association (APA) President Maria A. Oquendo, MD, PhD, told Medscape that the report "highlights the impact of mental health and substance use disorders on people's health and quality of life and reinforces the importance of making access to quality mental healthcare for all a national priority."

Behavioral health accredited facilities are already required to follow mental and substance abuse standards and evidence-based practices. However, those standards don’t apply to general practice hospitals or clinics. And with 18% of the population experiencing a mental illness and 8.4% dealing with a substance abuse disorder, it’s critical that all facilities know how to diagnose, document, and treat these patients.

This is an excerpt from a member only article. To read the article in its entirety, please login or subscribe to Briefings on Accreditation and Quality.

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