Hope for Mentally Ill
Thanks to The Pilot for the March 18 editorial on North Carolina's mental health reform (some are calling it "de-form").
We are reaping an unintended consequence, that of jeopardizing a patient's health while also failing to reduce costs. So, now our psychiatric hospitals are full and have closed their doors to patients, and our jails are overflowing with patients receiving no mental health care.
Like cancer patients, millions of mentally ill people live successfully if treated at an early stage. The right treatment must be available, and early intervention must occur. Neither is currently available in North Carolina.
Here is some encouraging news in addition to the editorial's information:
More funding is in the budget to re-energize the mental health system, and also the Division of Mental Health is recognizing a great resource in families. The NAMI helps in knowing what works and doesn't, is looking at crisis intervention training programs (jail diversion, not punishment). And an insurance parity bill that treats mental illness on the same level as other illnesses of the body may be introduced soon in North Carolina.
Judith A. Krall, President
NAMI Moore County
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