bannerSmallMental health and addiction are pervasive problems in our community. An estimated one in four adults in Franklin County experiences mental illness. Hospitalizations for psychiatric reasons and for attempted suicides have been increasing. And a lack of psychiatric beds means these patients often turn up at hospital emergency departments, crowding those facilities until more appropriate settings can be found.

Meanwhile, it's no secret that opiate use, addiction and accidental overdoses are on the rise. More than 10 percent of Franklin County residents 12 or older have required treatment for substance abuse. Columbus Public Health reported a 227 percent increase in overdose deaths among county residents between 2003 and 2014. Heroin-related deaths have surpassed prescription opiates among unintentional overdose deaths.

Ohio State Wexner Medical Center is doing its part to provide mental health and addiction support where it is most needed. This includes:
  • Free and reduced-cost clinics
  • Volunteer work with refugee populations who suffer from a high degree of stress
  • Mental health screenings and referrals for underserved populations
  • Research
  • Concussion testing in the schools
  • School-based mentor programs
  • Community initiatives to promote safe prescription use and prevent drug abuse
  • Operation Red Box safe-needle-disposal program

Behavioral Health Programs

GEMS Health Fair
Offers health fair activities

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