APB’s Regina Benjamin Examines the Mental Health & Substance Use Crisis Caused by COVID-19
12 Apr 2021
The COVID-19 pandemic has not only affected people physically, but also mentally. It has accelerated a mental health and substance use crisis in the United States. The Bipartisan Policy Center’s Behavioral Health Integration Task Force calls for the Biden administration and Congress to put an emphasis on the integration of primary care, mental health and substance use services because these issues will last long after the pandemic. Regina Benjamin, M.D., Founder and CEO, BayouClinic, Inc. and the 18th U.S. Surgeon General, is one of those task force members.
As a healthcare disparity expert and preventive health advocate, Regina Benjamin, M.D. believes in closing the treatment gap by tackling the mental health and addiction crisis through primary care integration. Anxiety and depression have increased drastically during the COVID-19 pandemic, and Benjamin wants to help the public before it is too late. Alongside the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Behavioral Health Integration Task Force, she emphasizes the importance of treating mental health as a physical health issue and taking action now.