N.M. TeleHealth Alliance Newsletter - May 24, 2018 - [Mental Health Awareness Month]


TeleHealth News


May 24, 2018




Reza Ghadimi

May is Mental Health Awareness Month.

1949, Mental Health Awareness Month has been observed in May. Yet the rate of the problem is on the increase. Despite all the rhetoric, no adequate resources are allocated to this national tragedy. On the contrary, many social, economic and political conditions have added to the underlying source of this crisis and it is affecting all classes of society. Many veterans returning from the wars we are fighting around the world, face unprecedented challenges, resulting in PTSD that is not effectively addressed or cared for.
Our politicians downplay the importance of the crisis and claim that the government is not responsible for the problem so it should not be liable for it. The acuteness of this calamity peaked in the 1980s when a large number of mental health hospitals and care centers were closed and their patients discharged into the streets. Many became homeless and out of necessity resorted to a life of petty crime just to survive, ending up in our prison system - costing the tax payers more than it would have cost to care for them in a mental health facility.
The mental health crisis has increased the suicide rate among our citizens. According to the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), there were 44,965 recorded suicides in 2016, up from 42,773 in 2014,. On average, adjusted for age, the annual U.S. suicide rate increased 24% between 1999 and 2014, the highest rate recorded in 28 years. White Americans are more likely to commit suicide than black Americans. But a new study finds that the opposite is true for children. According to a paper published in the journal JAMA Pediatrics, black children between the ages of 5 to 12 years old are roughly twice as likely to take their own life than their white counterparts.
This dilemma touches all levels of our society. Even our own profession is not immune as about 400 doctors commit suicide every year. To deal with this predicament, experts like; Rachel Pruchno Ph.D. suggest that we should bring back the mental asylums. But the very negative connotations attached to the concept of an asylum, turns everyone off. Yet the issue is not the place for mentally ill people rather the negative stigma attached to it. We need adequate resources to treat people with mental illness. We need psychiatrists, psychologists, and social workers. More inpatient facilities and integrated outpatient therapies so that people with mental illness are not homeless or imprisoned. We need to overhaul these infrastructures, not to eliminate them.
In this restructuring, Telehealth, Telemedicine, and Tele-education can play an enormous role. The majority of these people can be treated effectively with simple supervision by a professional. By involving family members, many could be managed at home. With a little direction, family practitioners could care for a good percentage of them in their office. And the more serious cases could be cared for in institutions run primarily by well trained midlevel and auxiliary healthcare providers. Telehealth, and Tele-education could be the solution to a major part of the mental health crisis.


In the News:

Seventy-first World Health Assembly (WHA) 
Geneva, Switzerland (21–26 May 2018)
Opioid Overdoses Are Rising Faster Among 
Latinos Than Whites Or Blacks.

Many Healthcare Fields Among the Fastest 
Growing Occupations in the US
Bureau of Labor Statistics
States Ease More Restrictions To Physician 
Assistants As Team Care Takes Hold
Results of the 2017 Medical School Enrollment Survey   
Will Climate Change Cause More Migrants than Wars?  
World Health Organization Model List of 
Essential In Vitro Diagnostics

UN WHO     
For more information checkout our website.


Of Interest:

Seventy-first World Health Assembly (WHA) is taking place in Geneva, Switzerland this week ( 21–26 May 2018)
Among many healthcare issues being discussed are;
Ebola and Polio transmission and outbreak management.
Health, environment and climate change .
The global shortage of, and access to, medicines and vaccines.
Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) at the 71st WHA.
at the 71st WHA.


How can TeleHealth help your Practice:

Consider expanding your practice
to the rural areas of our state
through TeleHealth.


Our Sponsors


Useful links:

    American Telemedicine Association
Assoc. of Clinicians for the Underserved
Burrell College of Osteopathic Medicine
Con Alma Health Foundation
Directory of State Medical Boards
Federation of State Medical Boards
Interstate Medical Licensure Compact
National Rural Health Association
New Mexico Broadband Program
New Mexico Department of Health
New Mexico First
NM Health Information Exchange
NM Health Resources
NM legislature
NM Medical Board
NM Rural Hospital Network
UNM Center for Telehealth
UNM Project ECHO
World Health Organization (WHO)


The New Mexico TeleHealth Alliance is a 501(c)3 non profit organization.
The Alliance meets on the second Thursday of every month.
For place, time and schedule of the meetings visit NM TeleHealth Alliance website.
New Mexico TeleHealth Alliance is a member of American Telemedicine Association (ATA)
This email was sent to you because of your involvement in healthcare.
To subscribe to this newsletter send an e-mail with your information to nl@nmtelehealth.org
For information regarding this newsletter contact R. Ghadimi at nl@nmtelehealth.org
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