National Mental Health Month 2021

National Prevention Week

PAEA is pleased to recognize National Prevention Week on May 9-15, 2021. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) uses this week to support prevention year-round by providing prevention ideas, capacity building, tools, and resources to help individuals and communities grappling with the substance use disorder epidemic. 8.8 Million young adults who suffer from mental illness and are at greater risk for substance use disorder; 5.1 million young adults already report having a substance use disorder.1 In 2018, 87% of young adults with substance use disorder did not receive treatment. The transition to adulthood for those between the ages of 18-25 is accompanied by a varying range of emotions that may be unsettling for many. For those with mental illness, the emotional triggers are intensified, which in some cases may lead to self-medicating with opioids or other substances. If you or someone you know needs help, please call the SAMHSA National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP.

National Mental Health Month

May is also National Mental Health Month, which was started in 1949 by Mental Health America. PAEA supports this observance and promotes the importance of good mental health and wellness. We encourage all to become more aware of the following symptoms, particularly in young adults:

  • Trouble sleeping and difficulty concentrating
  • Feelings of anxiety
  • Mood changes
  • Feeling hopeless and thoughts of suicide
  • Changes in appetite
PAEA Promotes Mental Health and OUD Treatment

PAEA supports good mental health through the Opioid Response Network-2 Clinical Sites Initiative (ORN-2) and is the leader in training PA students in behavioral health and SUD/OUD. PA students are trained to recognize the symptoms of mental illness and the risk factors for SUD/OUD. The Clinical Sites Initiative provides a pipeline to the behavioral health workforce which increases access to treatment for young adults experiencing symptoms of mental illness, placing them at risk for SUD/OUD. Highly trained PA graduates will positively impact the health and wellbeing of patients with mental illness.

For additional information, please contact

Funding for this initiative was made possible (in part) by grant no. 1H79TI083343 from SAMHSA. The views expressed in written conference materials or publications and by speakers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services; nor does mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.