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The Guide to Community Preventive Services (The Community Guide) Go to site home page About the Task Force


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The Guide to Clinical Preventive Services

Together, the Community Guide and the Clinical Guide provide evidence-based recommendations across the prevention spectrum.


Improving Mental Health and Addressing Mental Illness

Person sitting on a park bench with their head in their hands

Mental disorders are common in the United States.

  • In the U.S., about one in four adults and one in five children have diagnosable mental disorders (National Institute of Mental Health) External Web Site Icon.
  • Mental disorders are the leading cause of disability among ages 15-44 in the United States and Canada combined (National Institute of Mental Health) External Web Site Icon.
  • The cost of lost earnings alone due to major mental disorders in the United States is around $193 billion each year (Kessler et al., 2008).

Task Force Recommendations and Findings

This table lists interventions reviewed by the Community Guide, with a summary of the Task Force finding (definitions of findings). Click on an underlined intervention title for a summary of the review.

Intervention Task Force Finding
Collaborative Care for the Management of Depressive Disorders Recommended
June 2010
Mental Health Benefits Legislation Recommended
August 2012
Interventions to Reduce Depression Among Older Adults
Home-Based Depression Care Management Recommended
February 2008
Clinic-Based Depression Care Management Recommended
February 2008
Community-Based Exercise Interventions Insufficient Evidence
February 2008

Referenced Documents

Kessler, RC, Heeringa S, Lakoma MD, Petukhova M, Rupp AE, Schoenbaum M, Wang PS, Zaslavsky AM. The individual-level and societal-level effects of mental disorders on earnings in the United States: results from the National Comorbidity Survey replication. American Journal of Psychiatry 2008;165:703-11.


The findings and conclusions on this page are those of the Community Preventive Services Task Force and do not necessarily represent those of CDC. Task Force evidence-based recommendations are not mandates for compliance or spending. Instead, they provide information and options for decision makers and stakeholders to consider when determining which programs, services, and policies best meet the needs, preferences, available resources, and constraints of their constituents.

Sample Citation

The content of publications of the Guide to Community Preventive Services is in the public domain. Citation as to source, however, is appreciated. Sample citation:
Guide to Community Preventive Services. Improving mental health and addressing mental illness. Last updated: MM/DD/YYYY.