Behavioral Health

Governors play a critical role in addressing behavioral health in their state, including both mental health and substance use disorders. The Behavioral Health Program supports governor’s offices by providing evidence-informed promising and best practices that promote behavioral health to improve the lives and wellbeing of their constituents.

Our Focus Areas

  • Evidence based policies for reducing overdose
  • Mitigation of trauma and adverse childhood experiences to prevent substance use disorder
  • Implementation of a continuum of care to address substance use disorder
  • Mental Health Promotion
  • Reducing infectious diseases related to drug use

Meet The Team

  • Marianne Gibson
    Program Director
  • Dana Heilman
    Senior Policy Analyst
  • Abigail Smith
    Policy Coordinator

Behavioral Health Library

States Stem Opioid Overdose Through Information Sharing

The National Governors Association (NGA) today announced that four states—Delaware, Minnesota, New Mexico and Rhode Island—will participate in a learning lab on improving data-collection efforts and information sharing between law enforcement and public health ...

Opioid Addiction

The Honorable Mitch McConnell Majority Leader U.S. Senate United States Capitol, S-230 Washington, D.C. 20510 The Honorable Harry Reid Minority Leader U.S. Senate United States Capitol, S-221 Washington, D.C. 20510 ...

Governors Unite in the War Against Opioids

Governors gathered at the 2016 Winter Meeting to discuss how to address the nation’s opioid crisis, which claims the lives of 78 people each day. At the Health and Human ...

Governors Lead the Charge on Opioid Abuse, Education Reform, Zika Response

WASHINGTON—At the 2016 National Governors Association (NGA) Winter Meeting, led by Chair Utah Gov. Gary Herbert and Vice Chair Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, more than 40 governors gathered to discuss critical issues of ...

Governors, Physicians Call For End To Nation’s Opioid Epidemic

Joint statement by National Governors Association (NGA) Health and Human Services Committee Chair Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker; Vice Chair New Hampshire Gov. Maggie Hassan; American Medical Association (AMA) Chair-Elect Patrice ...

Governors Make Recommendations To Address National Opioid Epidemic

WASHINGTON—To address the deadliest drug epidemic in U.S. history, the nation’s governors are calling on the federal government to take swift action. Governors’ Priorities for Addressing the Nation’s Opioid Crisis provide ...

State, Local Leaders Expand Efforts to Treat Opioid Overdoses

NGA, the National Association of Counties and other organizations today announced an agreement that will offer public agencies access to a reduced-price, potentially lifesaving opioid withdrawal nasal spray. The FDA-approved ...

Using Data to Better Serve the Most Complex Patients

Across the country, health care systems continue to grapple with how best to serve patients with the greatest needs. These complex care patients, sometimes referred to as super-utilizers, have comorbid ...

Reducing Prescription Drug Abuse: Lessons Learned from an NGA Policy Academy

As part of the National Governors Association’s (NGA) ongoing effort to help states reduce prescription drug abuse, findings from the Prescription Drug Abuse Reduction Policy Academy were the focus of ...