Dual diagnosis aka Co-Occurring mental health conditions and substance abuse disorders affect nearly 14 million Americans each year. Of those only 19% receive the appropriate treatment for both conditions, with the vast majority bounced among different treatment systems and facilities that treat one of the conditions but not the other. Few treatment programs specialize in treating complex co- occurring or dual diagnosis disorders. Nationally, research continues to reveal that people with co-occurring or dual diagnosis disorders need a specialized form of treatment, referred to as integrated services.
Treatment systems for mental health and addiction have historically been and will continue to be separated systems of care. While many research studies have been performed on mental health issues and addictions separately, it has only been within recent years that a few studies have emerged on people who struggle with both conditions in unison. This emerging research identifies that traditional separated systems of care not only alienate the patient from the treatment, but they also result in much poorer outcomes than those experienced by patients with single disorders.
According to researchers and ever more surprising, we are just now learning from these studies that treatment programs designed to treat a specific disorder only are actually only capable of treating the minority of those in need where, in fact, up to 65.5% of patients with a substance abuse disorder had at least one mental disorder as well and 51% of patients with a mental disorder had at least one substance abuse disorder. We are also learning that these poorer outcomes result as much from these separate and contradictory systems of care as from the diagnoses themselves with people who have co-occurring conditions comprising the majority of the 10 percent of people using over 70 percent of the country’s healthcare resources