Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) has introduced the Mental Health in Schools Act to ensure that schools provide access to critical mental health treatment for kids who need and deserve these services.
The bill would authorize funding for grants to schools and community mental health centers to work with community-based organizations to expand access to mental health services for students. A House companion bill will soon be introduced by Rep. Grace Napolitano (D-Calif.).
Mental Health America's thoughts and prayers are with those who are affected by Hurricane Sandy. Please maintain and protect your health by getting sufficient rest and social support. Some resources that may help:
· The Disaster Distress Helpline is a national service that offers phone- and text-based crisis counseling and support to people in distress related to any natural or human-caused disaster, to help them move forward on the path of recovery. You may reach the Helpline at 1-800-985-5990 or by texting "TalkWithUs" to 66746.
· Mental Health America has several tips on dealing with stress during a national disaster.
· Dr. Mark Lerner and the American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress share 21 things you can do while living through a traumatic experience.
(We are pleased to publish this guest post by Marilyn Schmitt, Ph.D., on the 75th anniversary of Recovery International.)
In 1937, a movement began to be shaped that would improve the lives of many thousands of people suffering from mental and nervous disorders. The movement became a group-based training protocol developed by a Chicago neuropsychiatrist, Abraham Low, M.D. In the heyday of Freudian psychoanalysis, Low saw his patients in the University of Illinois Psychiatric Research Hospital discharged and returning in a revolving door of relapse. He began to experiment with tools that would train them to manage their symptoms and develop resistance to the illness. And he founded an “association of patients,” choosing the word “Recovery” as its name. Today its name is Recovery International.
We are happy to reporr that the Gulf War Veteran who was being prosecuted for gun violations after calling a suicide hotline last year, will be offered court-mandated counseling at a new Veterans Treatment Court that will avoid prosecution under an agreement reached last week.
Urgent action is needed. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida recently terminated mental health and addiction service providers and is seeking new contracts at substantially reduced rates through its affiliate New Directions Behavioral Health. This could affect patient access to care.