NEW PHILADELPHIA Dover, Oh

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Tuscarawas County, Ohio (WJER) - Area health officials are beginning their action plan now that the data is in from a recent community health survey. 

Healthy Tusc Chair Kim Nathan says they’ve identified some trending health improvements within Tuscarawas County, as well as some of the weak points they’ll now turn their attention to like mental health awareness and treatment. 

(like mental health awareness and treatment)

“What probably really bubbled to the top for us was the need for mental health services both in the adult and the youth population,” she says. “The numbers are somewhat staggering.”

Of the adults surveyed, 12 percent said they had a period of two weeks or more when they felt sad or hopeless nearly every day and stopped doing usual activities, and 7 percent said they considered attempting suicide. Of the youth surveyed, 17 percent said they had seriously considered attempting suicide in the past year and 8 percent said they have attempted suicide. 

Nathan says they will begin coordinating a multi-agency response to address mental health concerns, as well as other problems like addiction and bullying that showed up in the survey.

“[It’s] really kind of digging into that data and working with each of the disciplines to better that. Our hope is that we can implement and offer betters services in the schools, with healthcare, with our social service agencies,” she says.

Nathan says they want to start educating the public, first-responders and educators to identify warning signs for things like mental health issues, domestic violence or abuse, and teach them how to guide people into treatment.

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