by WEA Trust
June 26, 2017
Mental health issues are ever-present – but their impacts often hidden. You may be surprised to learn that the prevalence of all mental health issues is higher in Wisconsin than almost all other states in the country. Here at WEA Trust, a not-for-profit insurance company located in Wisconsin, we’ve been investigating mental health issues in our state and are designing solutions to tackle it.
According to Mental Health America, Wisconsin ranks 48th nationally for the highest prevalence of mental health issues. Additionally, the state of Wisconsin Department of Health Services estimates that only 50 percent of Wisconsin adults with a mental illness access treatment for their condition.
“We solely insure the public sector paid for by tax payers and when we look at our book of business, antidepressants are the #1 prescription written across the board – outweighing cholesterol, blood pressure, and even antibiotic medications” said Dr. Tim Bartholow, WEA Trust Vice President and Chief Medical Officer. “With this amount of antidepressant medication, we expect to see more therapy which is known to be critical in some care. Despite the efforts of our providers, it’s obvious that the Wisconsin public sector isn’t getting the care that they need.”
So why do mental health conditions, and specifically depression, often go untreated? Watch our video below to find out more about our research and how mental health conditions are affecting the public employee workforce.
It’s not unusual for those working in the public sector to place the focus on their students or the citizens that they serve. WEA Trust is flipping the narrative, urging these workers to think about themselves and put their health needs first. By prioritizing personal and mental health, workers are able to do a better job and employers will have happier and healthier employees.
At WEA Trust, our primary concern is addressing the issues that are truly affecting our membership. In July, WEA Trust is launching the first Wisconsin-based online talk therapy platform, Amwell Behavioral Health. Our membership will be able to access therapy appointments through their smartphone, tablet, or computer, during and outside of traditional business hours. Therapy visits are available within days of scheduling rather than weeks, and members on a traditional health plan will have a $0 co-pay. With busy schedules and tight pocket books, it’s critical that health care works with you, not against.