When most people think about health, they naturally think about the physical body. Insurance plans are built around it, workplaces tell you to stay home when you have a cold, and people are able to quickly spot when they or others are not feeling their best physically.
But identifying when we or those around us are not feeling our best mentally is more of a challenge. Access to behavioral health and addiction resources and treatment is not as readily available or, at the very least, understood. We’re increasingly becoming all too familiar with the impact of mental health in our daily lives and the communities in which we live and work. Nothing has brought this more to bear than COVID-19. As we develop measures to manage the physical toll the virus takes on the body, we’ll continue to feel the impacts of the past year on mental wellbeing.
The National Council for Behavioral Health and its members have long been advocates of treating the whole person—mind and body. It has worked hard to bring to the forefront the idea that mental health is just as important to monitor and treat as physical health, and often times, the two are intrinsically linked. The Council was able to quickly respond to the pandemic, providing members with PPE and other timely resources. They also knew that advocating for more funds and greater access to mental health services would be essential.
But even prior to COVID-19, the Council was busy doubling down on a singular vision: to make mental wellbeing a reality for everyone. We have been heartened and inspired by The Council’s work, particularly as we have worked to ensure our own team and community’s mental health needs were being considered during the turbulent past year. This is one of many reasons we were honored to support the Council in launching their rebrand as the National Council for Mental Wellbeing.
More than a name change, the National Council for Mental Wellbeing has been on the frontlines leading the charge by ensuring behavioral health providers were prioritized in the COVID-19 relief and government funding package, opening up telehealth services, and reimagining their Mental Health First Aid program.
We’re excited to see what The Council achieves in the future as they continue to champion evidence-based programs, expand the focus of health care, and break down stigma and barriers to care. We will continue to look to their lead in supporting our team and clients’ whole health.