Study:25% of hospital patients have mental illness

A new study by the HHS Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality has concluded that one in four adults admitted to hospitals has a mental health or substance-abuse problem. Only 2 million of the 32 million hospital stays in 2004 were primarily to treat a mental health diagnosis, but another six million were diagnosed with mental health problems while hospitalized for another condition. All told, almost 8 million stays involved depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and other mental illnesses. Also, while suicide attempts accounted for only 179,000 million of the hospital stays, 93 percent involved a mental health condition. Researchers found that two-thirds of the cost of this treatment is carried by governments. Medicare paid for about half of these stays, and Medicaid paid for 18 percent.

To learn more about the study:
- read this United Press International item

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