SAMHSA’s Wellness Promotion Efforts

SAMHSA promotes wellness for people with, or at risk for, mental and/or substance use disorders through screenings, education, and other programs.

Achieving health and wellness calls for an integrated focus on both the mind and the body. In addition to the difficulties presented by mental and/or substance use disorders, individuals with behavioral health conditions often face other health challenges that impact their wellness. There are effective tools and interventions designed to prevent and intervene early to avoid illness and promote healthy lifestyle behaviors and overall wellness. SAMHSA works to ensure that individuals who are at high risk for or have a mental and/or substance use disorder have access to and receive appropriate behavioral health services as well as primary health care services to prevent and treat other medical conditions and to maintain health and wellness.

Wellness Initiative

SAMHSA’s Wellness Initiative promotes wellness for people with mental health and substance use conditions. The aim is to inspire individuals, families, behavioral health and primary care providers, as well as peer-run, faith-based, and other community organizations to improve health behaviors. Also, individuals are encouraged to explore their talents, skills, interests, social connections, and environment to incorporate the eight dimensions of wellness into their lives.

Million Hearts®

SAMHSA is partnering with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to broaden the reach of the Million Hearts® Initiative so that state and local organizations can increase awareness, reduce risk, improve the management of heart disease, and promote the eight dimensions of wellness. SAMHSA is working with community-based peer organizations to provide education and dissemination of the cardiovascular disease (CVD) prevention and management principles of the Department of Health and Human Services’ Million Hearts program. SAMHSA provides information and resources to local organizations across the country to work with individuals with behavioral health conditions in screening for CVD risk factors such as high blood pressure, tobacco use, and salt intake and in promoting healthy eating, physical activity, smoking cessation, accessing treatment, and other strategies to reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease.

Learn more about SAMHSA’s Million Hearts effort.

Health Education

The SAMHSA-Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Center for Integrated Health Solutions (CIHS) offers wellness strategies within its health education effort. The SAMHSA-HRSA wellness strategies include:

Health Screening

Regular screenings in primary and other health care settings enable earlier identification of mental and/or substance use disorders, which is intended to translate to earlier care. Screenings should be provided to people of all ages. The SAMHSA-HRSA CIHS provides links to screening tools on behavioral health issues, including depression, drug and alcohol use, suicide risk, and trauma.

SAMHSA’s Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) is a public health approach to the delivery of early intervention and treatment services for people with substance use disorders and those at risk of developing these disorders. Many different types of community settings provide opportunities for early intervention with at-risk substance users before more severe consequences occur. Learn more at the SBIRT grantees webpage.

Health Management

Whole Health Action Management, a SAMHSA training program and peer support group model developed by the SAMHSA-HRSA CIHS, encourages increased resiliency, wellness, and self-management of physical and behavioral health among people with a mental and/or substance use disorder.

The SAMHSA-HRSA CIHS provides resources on how a nutritious diet and adequate physical activity contribute to healthy living.

Health Navigators

Health navigation intervention seeks to improve health and health care use for people with serious mental illness and/or chronic substance use issues. Navigators encourage health care self-management through education and behavioral strategies.

SAMHSA’s peer and recovery providers are trained and available to transfer their experience of recovery from mental illness and/or addiction to deliver services in behavioral health settings that promote mind-body recovery and resiliency.

Last Updated: 10/26/2015