Behavioral Health Needs Assessment

Levels of mental health and substance use issues have increased across the country and in Denver over the past several years. The Denver Department of Public Health & Environment (DDPHE) is working to address these challenges head on, starting with a clear understanding of what the needs are in our community. 

DDPHE has released the results of a Behavioral Health Needs Assessment, which used quantitative and qualitative data to understand the type and level of behavioral health service needs in Denver and to determine the type and level of behavioral health services available. The needs assessment was conducted over the course of the year and draws on qualitative and quantitative data, including interviews and focus groups with community members and service providers. 



See key results of the assessment displayed as infographics in the links below. 

Community Needs Infographic(PDF, 167KB)

Provider Needs Infographic(PDF, 187KB)

Full Report

Read the final report for the project using the link below. 

BHNA Final Report(PDF, 997KB)


View the appendices for the full assessment in the link below.

BHNA Final Report Appendices(PDF, 4MB)

Funding and Partnerships

The needs assessment was funded through Denver’s American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) allocation included in Mayor Michael B. Hancock’s 2022 budget.  DDPHE allocated $1.25 million in ARPA funding for the assessment and to enhance ongoing work in this area and help to initiate programming based on the findings. In the 2023 budget, DDPHE received $20 million in ARPA funding to build out programs based on the recommendations of the needs assessment. 

DDPHE contracted with Analytics and Insights Matter (AIM) and Arrow Performance Group (APG) for research, design, and analysis for the needs assessment. Dr. Thomas Barrett was retained as a behavioral health advisor, and interns from the University of Denver participated in the project for several months. The project team worked closely with DDPHE to ensure that Denver’s diverse community voices were heard in the project’s development and implementation.