A growing number of Americans require better access to behavioral health treatment options. Digital solutions can help. Mental illness is a growing epidemic in the U.S.More than 43 million Americans, roughly 18 percent, have a mental health condition, according to a 2017 report published by Mental Health America. However, many of those individuals lack access to care, with one in five adults reporting an unmet need and nearly 8 percent of youth without access to mental health services through private insurance. Overall in 2017, 56 percent of American adults with a mental illness did not receive treatment, according to the report.Exacerbating the issue is a shortage of providers to treat such patients. According to the report, to meet the mental health needs of Americans, providers in the lowest-ranked states would have to treat six times as many people as providers in the highest-ranked states. For example, there is only one mental health professional for every 1,260 people in the state of Alabama.While not a panacea, digital solutions can help to alleviate some of this pressure, particularly by improving accessibility for patients. When it comes to improving behavioral care, technology must be a key part of the solution.

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