The "National Behavioral Health Barometer" (Barometer) provides data about key indicators of behavioral health problems including rates of serious mental illness, suicidal thoughts, substance abuse, underage drinking, and the percentages of those who seek treatment for these disorders. The Barometer shows these data at the national level, and for each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia.
The Barometer indicates that the behavioral health of our Nation is improving in some areas. For example, the rate of prescription pain reliever abuse has fallen for both children ages 12–17 and adults ages 18–25 from 2007 to 2011 (9.2 percent to 8.7 percent and 12.0 percent to 9.8 percent, respectively).
"The Barometer is a dynamic new tool providing important insight into the 'real world' implications of behavioral health issues in communities across our Nation," said SAMHSA Administrator Pamela S. Hyde, J.D. "Unlike many behavioral health reports, its focus is not only on what is going wrong in terms of behavioral health, but what is improving and how communities might build on that progress."