Saturday, March 9, 2013

Pacific NW | Eleanor Owen's tireless battle for mental-health care | Seattle Times Newspaper

ELEANOR LIKES to talk about lessons. Here is one: Mental illness may be forever, but it's not the end.
Read here:
Pacific NW | Eleanor Owen's tireless battle for mental-health care | Seattle Times Newspaper

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Parents to Congress: Police no solution to mental illness

Hallelujah & amen!!!

Parents to Congress: Police no solution to mental illness

Chattanooga Times Free Press, March 4, 2013

Mentally ill offered new path for care with AOT

What IS our excuse?

Chattanooga Times Free Press
March 5, 2013

Mentally Ill in Tennessee deserve better options.

Lawmakers Examine Violence and Mental Illness | C-SPAN

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

As part of the ongoing review by lawmakers into mental health issues raised by the Newtown shooting, the House Energy and Commerce Committee talked with leading health experts to explore issues related to severe mental illness and violence.
The panelists discussed the treatment of mental illness and obstacles to seeking treatment for individual with the condition. They spoke about the most effective federal, state and local programs for prevention and early detection of severe mental illness in children and young adults.
The committee's hearing, titled "After Newtown: A National Conversation on Violence and Severe Mental Illness," included professional and personal perspectives from mental health advocates, physicians and members of victim's families.
View here:
Lawmakers Examine Violence and Mental Illness | C-SPAN

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Joan Garrett, award winning journalist for the Chattanooga Times, reports one Tennessee family's frustrating experience of a sick son caught in the Revolving Door of Criminalization:

"In the cellblocks of the county jail, suspected murderers, drug traffickers, burglars, wife beaters and rapists wait for hearings and trials. Somewhere among them sits Dennis James' schizophrenic son.
 His crime? He's sick."
Read it here: Chattanooga Times: Hamilton County Jails Are Often Home for the Mentally Ill - Advocates Say They Have Better Idea

Saturday, March 2, 2013

As the Tide Turns, a Sea Change for Mental Health?

(Feb. 26, 2013) Mental-health advocates coast-to-coast are seeing a “rare and unexpected” interest in plugging the gaps in America’s mental-health-care system, according to a story by Washington Post reporters Brady Dennis and Lena H. Sun (“After Newtown, support for mental-health spending grows,” Feb. 23).
map“In the wake of the massacre in Newtown, Conn., lawmakers from both parties, along with notoriously tight-belted governors, are pushing to restore some of the estimated $4.3 billion in mental-health spending that was slashed from state budgets between 2009 and 2012,” their story reported. “At the same time, they are weighing new initiatives, such as adding beds at psychiatric hospitals and improving treatment for inmates with behavioral disorders.”
Treatment Advocacy Center Executive Director Doris A. Fuller was quoted at length. “We are seeing interest in reform in states that haven’t looked at it in a decade or more. . . . It’s certainly created opportunities that we have rarely seen before. We’re trying to improve the laws in such a way that legal barriers to timely and effective treatment are removed.”
Although Fuller applauded the attention, she said that “given the limited resources, the focus should be on those with the most severe mental illnesses — a population also at the highest risk for violence.”
Many of the bills introduced this legislative season do just that. Bills to authorize assisted outpatient treatment have been introduced in three of the states without AOT: Connecticut, Nevada and Massachusetts. Legislation to broaden overly restrictive inpatient standards are under consideration or in the works.
“The budget cuts of recent years have translated to fewer beds at psychiatric hospitals, fewer crisis centers and decreased access to treatment for low-income patients,” the Post reported. “The tide, advocates hope, is beginning to shift.”
The Treatment Advocacy Center not only hopes the tide is beginning to shift. We’re working to turn it every single day.

Friday, March 1, 2013