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Mental Health

Mending a Broken Heartland is such a compelling title, how could anyone resist the temptation to pick up this publication? Written in the 1980s by Joyce Barrett, it details how rural communities find ways to survive through the farm crisis. However, even with all the concern, it is well documented that rural America still lags behind its urban counterparts in mental health care, with little difference between the prevalence of clinically defined mental health problems in urban America versus rural.

Rural America continues to suffer from an economic crisis; besides farming, there are other struggling industries related to natural resources - such as mining and logging - experiencing a net loss in economic strength. Jobs are scarce in rural America, local businesses and services are closing, and young people are moving to the urban areas leaving the elderly back home. It is no wonder that suicide is the second leading cause of death in states with primarily rural populations, especially states in the rural mountain west and Alaska. The need for outreach and community-based mental health services is as critical in rural communities as it is in urban regions but the health care just isn't there to do the mending.


If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, call 800.SUICIDE (800.784.2433) or 800.273.TALK (800.273.8255)

For more information about suicide prevention

Contact your local Mental Health Association

There are more organizations related to Mental Health in the organizations section.

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Last Reviewed: 7/30/2013

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Funding for this project was supported by Grant Number U56RH05539 from the Office of Rural Health Policy, Health Resources and Services Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The contents of this website are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the funder.