The National Council asked PCI to create a website to serve as the focal point for the National Behavioral Health Network for Tobacco & Cancer Control’s outreach strategy.
Tobacco Use and Cancer Rates in the Behavioral Health Community
The National Council for Behavioral Health (National Council) is the unifying voice of America’s community mental health and substance abuse treatment organizations. With more than 2,000 member organizations, the National Council serves more than 8 million adults and children living with mental illnesses and addiction disorders. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) named the National Council an awardee to reduce tobacco use and cancer among people with mental and substance use disorders. As a result, the National Behavioral Health Network for Tobacco & Cancer Control (NBHNTCC) was born to address health disparities identified by CDC’s Office of Smoking and Health and the Division of Cancer Prevention and Control.
PCI was asked by the National Council to create a website to serve as the focal point for the NBHNTCC’s outreach strategy. PCI’s objective for BHtheChange.org is to reach NBHNTCC’s primary target audience: organizations providing assistance to the behavioral health and substance use communities. While these organizations may recognize the prevalence of tobacco use and high cancer rates in the populations they serve, they may not be aware of the severity. Studies show that tobacco use rates among people with mental illness and addictions are 94% higher than adults without these disorders, and at least 50% of all deaths among people with serious mental illness can be attributed to tobacco product use. The website also targets broader public health and health service delivery communities and the families and friends of those suffering from mental illness and substance abuse disorders.
In order for BHhtheChange.org to be the established go-to source for resources addressing the high rate of tobacco use and cancer in the behavioral health community, PCI developed a strategy for NBHNTCC’s web content to remain relevant and valuable. NBHNTCC has limited internal bandwidth for content production, so we suggested a content curation strategy. This strategy enables NBHNTCC to collect and share value-added content provided only by network experts. As a result, BHtheChange.org will always be comprised of evidence-based, practical, and actionable resources while also serving as a platform for sharing best practices from around the country.
Through BHtheChange.org, NBHNTCC will help network members incorporate insight on the severely high rate of tobacco use and cancer among the behavioral health and substance abuse populations into their work going forward. Visit our work page for more information on our work for NBHNTCC.