SALT LAKE CITY — Rep. Chris Stewart is among a bipartisan group of congressmen seeking hundreds of millions of additional dollars for mental health care.
Stewart, R-Utah, joined another Republican and two Democrats in a letter to the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies asking for additional funding in this year’s appropriations bill to close gaps in providing comprehensive care to mental health patients.
“Too many of us have experienced the tragic loss of life and heartbreak that results from suicide,” Stewart said in a statement. “Access to suicide prevention resources is critical, and I believe Congress can do more to help those in crisis."
In the letter, Reps. John Delaney, D-Md., Jose Serrano, D-N.Y., John Faso, R-N.Y., and Stewart say they're pleased to see funding for mental health resources in bills passed by the House and Senate appropriations committees.
"However, given the magnitude of the mental health crisis our country faces, we strongly believe more action is necessary," they wrote.
The congressman says their recommendations would provide more "holistic" approaches to mental health as it applies to education, treatment and real-time data to help address spikes in specific communities.
They seek at least $166 million in additional funding for the National Institutes of Mental Health, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline and state grants for suicide prevention programs.