Mental Health


It’s not unusual for teenagers to struggle with depression, anxiety and substance abuse – problems students are reluctant to discuss with their parents or teachers.  The situation resonates with pop star Lady Gaga, who is funding a new approach to teen mental health – a program being tested at eight schools nationwide – two of them here in Virginia. 

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As May comes to a close, the issues surrounding mental health continue to resonate during Mental Health Awareness Month. Some parts of the state are struggling more than others.




Across Virginia there’s been an uptick in psychiatric admissions to hospitals, to the point where beds are filling up. Thursday a group from the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association rolled out some ideas on what can be done.


Someone trying to get a mental health evaluation can now walk into any of the state’s community services boards and get one right away, instead of waiting days or even weeks for an appointment. It’s a dramatic shift that the state has been working towards for years.

In a recent survey nearly half of the 20,000 people questioned said they were lonely – that they had fewer social contacts and meaningful relationships than they’d like.  The problem is especially common in people who are already dealing with mental illness, but a program in Charlottesville offers a solution.