SC Department of Mental Health News Release

For Immediate Release

April 25, 2005

Contact: John Hutto
                Public& Legislative Affairs
                803-898-8584
                jhh35@scdmh.org

 Good Mental Health Makes Good Sense

Columbia, SC – Today, the South Carolina Department of Mental Health launched its new public awareness campaign called “Good Mental Health Makes Good Sense” to stress that mental health problems are as important as physical health problems, as treatable and should be addressed with the same urgency.

Governor Mark Sanford has proclaimed May as Mental Health Month, and the General Assembly is currently debating a proposed bill that would provide insurance benefits for certain mental illnesses.

The new campaign’s toolkit includes a 30-second TV spot, a four-color brochure, a radio script for public service announcements, facts about mental health problems, a Power Point presentation, tips on giving an effective talk and more. Furthermore, the new campaign includes a month-long exhibit at the Columbia Museum of Art, entitled The Art of Recovery, which features art by people living with mental illnesses.

This awareness campaign reflects the Department’s dedication to implementing the goals recommended in the final report of President George W. Bush’s New Freedom Commission on Mental Health, specifically Goal 1.1: To educate the general public and the media about mental health issues through the implementation of a statewide campaign to reduce the stigma of seeking care and a strategy for suicide prevention.

The Department of Mental Health operates seventeen community mental health centers, two psychiatric hospitals, and two nursing care homes and last year served almost 100,000 citizens, including 33,000 children and adolescents.

If you would like more information about “Good Mental Health Makes Good Sense,” or to schedule a speaker, call 1-800-763-1024.

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