DETROIT, Sept. 26, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The University of Maryland, Baltimore School of Social Work, Screening for Mental Health and Man Therapy announced the launch of HealthyMenMichigan.org as part of a statewide campaign to keep middle-aged men who are more likely to die by suicide from slipping through the cracks. The campaign combines the knowledge and best practices of Screening for Mental Health and Man Therapy, leaders in the development and provision of online innovative screening, referrals and online support programs to encourage middle-aged men to access help and improve their emotional well-being.
HealthyMenMichigan.org will offer free online mental health screenings, educational information, and comprehensive local, statewide and national mental health, suicide, substance use and crisis resources. The campaign focuses on depression and suicide, but also includes access to anonymous screenings for substance use, anxiety, eating disorders and posttraumatic stress.
The campaign is part of a larger research effort led by Dr. Jodi Jacobson Frey at the University of Maryland, Baltimore, School of Social Work. Frey stresses the need to "evaluate innovative online programs to see what actually works for men with regard to reducing suicide ideation and behaviors." To learn more about the voluntary evaluation study, visit http://ssw.umaryland.edu/healthymenmichigan/.
"The stigma present around seeking help for mental health issues is pervasive, particularly for men. Men in Michigan are no different. HealthyMichiganMen.org is a great campaign that will allow men in our state to begin thinking about problems they may be having in a different light," said Patricia K. Smith, Violence Prevention Program Coordinator, Injury & Violence Prevention, Michigan Department of Health & Human Services.
Suicide is ranked as one of the top 10 causes of death in Michigan, and has risen by nearly 40% since 2000. The most significant increase has been found in middle-aged men. The CDC's National Center for Health Statistics reports a 43% increase in the rate of suicide among men ages 45-64 (Curtain, Warner and Hedegaard, 2016).