Free Webcasts Identify Signs of Mental Illnesses


A series of free webcasts are available next month to help people recognize the signs and symptoms of common mental illnesses and to learn how to connect people in need with professional, peer and self-help resources in their communities. The four webcasts, produced by the National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare (National Council), are available in May–Mental Health Month.
Dates and topics for the live webcasts airing from 5-6 p.m. Eastern include:
– May 5: Understanding Depression
– May 12: Understanding Anxiety Disorders
– May 19: Understanding Psychosis
– May 26: Understanding Substance Use Disorders

“Mental health issues affect all of society in some way, shape, or form,” says Linda Rosenberg, the National Council’s president and CEO. “It is extremely likely people will encounter someone in their family, workplace, school, church or community who is experiencing mental health challenges and requires support and intervention. People may be able to help if they understand the signs symptoms of mental illnesses.”

The National Council’s May is Mental Health Month webcasts feature content from the evidence-based public education program, Mental Health First Aid USA, and are presented by certified program instructors. Mental Health First Aid is the initial help given to a person showing symptoms of mental illness or in a mental health crisis until appropriate professional, peer or family support can be engaged. A 12-hour course prepares members of the public to provide Mental Health First Aid to those in need.

To participate in the webcasts, people need a computer with Internet access and must register in advance at

People can listen to the presentation via their computer speakers or by dialing in by phone. Viewers can also ask questions after the presentations.

For more information contact the National Council at, 202.684.3740.

Mental Health First Aid is a groundbreaking public education program that helps the public identify, understand, and respond to signs of mental illnesses and substance use disorders. Mental Health First Aid USA is managed, operated, and disseminated by three national authorities — the National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare, the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, and the Missouri Department of Mental Health. The Mental Health First Aid program has benefited a variety of audiences and key professions, including hospitals, employers and business leaders, faith communities, school personnel, police and corrections staff, nursing homes, mental health authorities, policymakers, young people, families and the general public. To find a course near you or learn how you can become a certified instructor, visit