Recently Completed Legislative Session Leads To Big Gains In Mental Health Care

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Photo: Mental Health Bills
Steve Ledwon relaxes in a "comfort room" while listening to Pearl Jam at Mi Esperanza Wellness Center on Tuesday, June 14, 2016, in Alamosa, Colorado.

But officials say 2017 was a banner year filled with advances that will have a great impact across Colorado. In one example, the House and Senate both passed -- and Gov. Hickenlooper signed into law last month -- a bill that provides support to students who may be dealing with mental health issues. Another is designed to end the use of jails and correctional facilities as placement options for individuals with mental health concerns who haven't been charged with a crime.

Advocates say it's important to determine early if someone is experiencing the symptoms of a mental health condition. Mental Health Colorado is offering anonymous, online screenings for those trying to assess the condition of themselves or family members.

Andrew Romanoff, president and CEO of Mental Health Colorado, and a former speaker of the Colorado House of Representatives, spoke with Colorado Matters host Ryan Warner.