APA Praises Congress for Passing Bill That Funds Mental Health and Substance Use Services

Washington, D.C. – The American Psychiatric Association (APA) praised Congress for funding several mental health programs through the Defense-Labor, Health and Human Services, Education (Labor-HHS) FY 2019 funding bills (H.R. 6157), which passed this week. The spending package includes:

  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA): $5.7 billion (a $584 million increase)
  • National Institutes of Health (NIH): $39.1 billion (a $2 billion increase), including $429 for the BRAIN Initiative
  • Curbing the opioid epidemic: $3.8 billion ($206 million increase)
  • Minority Fellowship Program: A total of $13.169 million (an increase of $500,000) through the Center for Mental Health Services, Center for Substance Abuse Treatment and Center for Substance Abuse Prevention

“We thank members of Congress from both parties for prioritizing mental health care—including treatment for and prevention of substance abuse—in the FY 2019 Defense-Labor-HHS funding package,” said APA President Altha Stewart, M.D. “The commitment to mental health care shown in these appropriations will advance critical research on psychiatric disorders and improve care for the millions of Americans living with mental illness and substance use disorders,” she said.

“The APA was pleased to see the Defense-Labor-HHS package pass through regular order and not through a continuing resolution,” said APA CEO and Medical Director Saul Levin, M.D., M.P.A. “Mental health and substance use treatment are critical to our nation’s well-being. Our members were vocal about the need to fund the Minority Fellowship Program and we thank the members of Congress who worked with us to secure and expand funding for this critical program.”

American Psychiatric Association

The American Psychiatric Association, founded in 1844, is the oldest medical association in the country. The APA is also the largest psychiatric association in the world with more than 37,800 physician members specializing in the diagnosis, treatment, prevention and research of mental illnesses. APA’s vision is to ensure access to quality psychiatric diagnosis and treatment. For more information please visit www.psychiatry.org.

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