Sat. Apr 17th, 2021

By Brian Witt, The Associated Press

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) – As someone who initially struggled to accept his own bipolar disorder diagnosis years ago and now works to help others, Sean Driscoll knows how difficult it is for someone They may recognize that they are suffering.

University of Peer Specialists, with epidemics of mental health concerns Maryland The Medical Center’s Department of Psychiatry says it focuses on getting people to focus on resources that can help.

“It’s okay to talk about your problems,” said Driscoll, who writes songs to raise awareness of mental health issues under his stage name Drisko. “It’s okay to believe and believe in people, and it’s okay to feel that.”

With an increase in COVID-19 cases and the expectation of a difficult winter, state and local authorities as well as health care professionals are taking steps to raise awareness about getting help in times of growing mental health concerns, especially on holidays. Problems may occur when in season. More intense.

Dr. David Markozzi, a professor of emergency medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, who is the government’s senior medical advisor for COVID-19. Larry Hogan focused on mental health during the epidemic when he talked about suicide. Longtime friend during a news conference last month.

“Let’s make sure we reach the outside,” he said, as he spoke with difficulty. “Let’s make sure that we support each other and talk to a professional if useful.”

Maryland has seen a 30% increase in calls to the state’s 211 crisis hotline this year, Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford, who chairs the state commission on mental health. The lieutenant governor has been leading the panel since early last year.

“What we’re doing is advocating a little bit more and asking people to be aware of their own mental well-being, and if they need to talk to someone and help others reach their friends and their friends Rutherford said the family and people have not spoken in a long time.

This effort shares a connection with work in fighting drug overdoses, which is on the rise during the epidemic. Drug-related deaths have been occurring in Maryland so far this year. According to the Department of Health, total drug and alcohol-related deaths occurred in June compared to 1,215 last year.

Preliminary data from the Medical Examiner’s Office shows a 13% decrease in suicides in the state from 1 January to 30 September compared to the same period in 2019.

“While we are not yet known for some, the decrease in suicide rates can be attributed to Maryland’s increasing focus on the development of crisis systems, including increased mental health crisis beds, access to treatment for substance use disorders. Includes an increase in marketing of support services. Like Maryland’s helpline, and increased by local behavioral health officials, “Deputy Secretary of Behavioral Health Administration of the Department of Health Dr. Alia Jones said.

Health care professionals are aware of mental health needs before the epidemic begins, said Donna Jacobs, who is a senior vice president for government relations at the University of Maryland Medical System. In 2018, the medical system held a day-long program with experts and mental health providers and started a forum every six months.

When the epidemic hit, the forums went online and focused on mental health issues related to COVID-19. Not All Wounds has a Forum Visible series, which allows people to hear from experts and ask questions on topics such as extra anxiety and stress and talk to families and children about the epidemic.

One platform focuses on seniors who can live alone, or others who live alone and feel cut off from what they normally do.

In June, the UMMS organized a two-part series to counter the concerns of racism and social justice to help address concerns related to protests against racial injustice at the same time.

One of the main messages: It’s okay to seek help.

“You don’t have to try to navigate it or explain it on your own or be ashamed that you have these kinds of ideas,” said Jacobs, who has helped organize the forums.

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