Cutler Institute for Health and Social Policy

Population Health and Health Policy

Rural Adults Face Parity Problems and Other Barriers to Appropriate Mental Health Care

Abstract: 

Findings suggest that a multi-level approach is essential for meeting the mental health service needs of rural residents.<p></p>
Key facts:<li>
8% of rural adults say that they are in "fair" or "poor" mental health versus 6% of urban adults;
<li>Among those using mental health services, rural residents are more likely than urban residents to use medication but not therapy. Practice guidelines for quality mental health treatment recommend that medications be given in combination with therapy;
<li>Both rural and urban adults have greater cost sharing for their mental health care than for their total health care use. The percentages do not differ by residence; however, rural residents may be at greater risk of forgoing mental health care due to costs.</li>

Publication Type: 
Research and Policy Brief
Publish Date: 
November 30, 2008
URL: 
http://muskie.usm.maine.edu/Publications/rural/pb40/Rural-Adult-Mental-Health-Parity.pdf