NCHS Releases Two New Reports on Mental Health Among U.S. Adults during Pandemic

1 out of 5 U.S. adults (20.3%) received mental health treatment in the past 12 months, including 16.5% who had taken prescription medication for their mental health and 10.1% who received counseling or therapy by a mental health professional in 2020.

The data is featured in a new report, “Mental Health Treatment Among Adults: United States, 2020,” showing women were more likely than men to have received any mental health treatment. Non-Hispanic White adults (24.4%) were more likely than non-Hispanic Black (15.3%), Hispanic (12.6%), and non-Hispanic Asian (7.7%) adults to have received any mental health treatment.

As the level of urbanization decreased, the percentage of adults who had taken medication for their mental health increased, and the percentage who had received counseling or therapy decreased.

A second report, “Perceived Social and Emotional Support Among Adults: United States, July–December 2020,” released today found that more than 3 out of 4 U.S. adults (77.5%) reported receiving the social and emotional support they need during the second half of 2020.

Social and emotional support was lower among Hispanic (70.9%), non-Hispanic black (71.6%), and non-Hispanic Asian (71.3%) adults compared with non-Hispanic white adults (81.2%). The percentage of adults who always or usually received the social and emotional support they need was higher among adults who were married or living with a partner compared with adults not in those relationships.

Social and emotional support increased as educational attainment and family income increased.  A greater percentage of adults without disability (78.6%) received the social and emotional support they need compared with adults with disability (65.5%).

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