Helping Kentuckians find hope & healing
Communities across Kentucky are experiencing a growing mental health crisis. Stress, anxiety and depression are at an all-time high. Our doctors are seeing increasing numbers of kids and teens in the ER for urgent mental health needs.
Time and time again, UK HealthCare has risen to meet the challenges Kentucky faces – from fighting cancer to battling COVID-19. This mental health crisis is no exception. Working with state and community partners, we are creating innovative programs to bring hope and support to Kentuckians where they are.
Resources for navigating life's struggles
Mental health IS health. As part of UK HealthCare’s Healthy Kentucky Initiative, we are committed to providing resources for families and individuals who find themselves in need of support and services.
Our resource page includes expert information on anxiety, depression, suicide prevention and other important topics. Our specialists speak out on a variety of subjects -- from ways you can help your child manage stress and anxiety to the benefits of bringing mindfulness into your daily life.
Lifesaving support in times of crisis
In Kentucky, suicide is the second leading cause of death for youth ages 10-14 and young adults ages 15-24. To meet this crisis, UK HealthCare is proud to support Kentucky‘s launch of the new 988 suicide and crisis hotline. Anyone experiencing mental-health-related distress can call, text or chat 988 to be connected to compassionate care and support.
We are also cultivating mental health champions across our campuses through training in the Question, Persuade, Refer (QPR) Suicide Prevention Gatekeeper Training. Gatekeepers can be anyone in a position to recognize and refer someone at risk of suicide, including parents, friends, teachers, pastors, caseworkers and many others. QPR is designed to teach the general public about the known warning signs of a suicide crisis and how to respond. This method teaches three simple steps to save the life of a friend, family member, colleague or stranger. UK HealthCare recently launched a program to provide free QPR online training to interested employees.
Sharing ideas as a Community of Practice
Of the 50 states, Kentucky has the 2nd highest rate of depression among adults and the 4th highest rate of frequent mental distress.
To address a growing need, UK HealthCare is bringing together providers across the Commonwealth to share knowledge through the Behavioral Health Community of Practice. To optimize care for patients in Kentucky, behavioral health experts will share best practices, tools and resources with community organizations, primary care providers and specialists through scheduled learning sessions.
Early intervention through school partnerships
UK HealthCare Adolescent Medicine has partnered with school districts in Central Kentucky since 2007 to provide risk screening and intervention to students. Through this program, physical health and mental health risks are identified. Adolescent Medicine providers use screening data to partner with school district personnel in developing education and intervention priorities, which include staff training, teacher consultation, health education, group therapy, and individual medical and mental health services.
UK HealthCare's 2025 strategic plan provides a road map for achieving our vision: One community committed to creating a healthier Kentucky. We are committed to positively impacting our community and our Commonwealth by understanding and responding to health needs through engagement, outreach and collaboration.