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Monday, April 15, 2013

Nevada's mental health care

The Sacramento Bee reports that the state of Nevada, unable to handle the number of mentally ill patients entrusted to its care, buses those patients to any and all states via Greyhound - just to get rid of the burden. California receives most of these patients, not that they are warned ahead of time. This is my favorite paragraph:
Nevada's approach to dispatching mentally ill patients has come under scrutiny since one of its clients turned up suicidal and confused at a Sacramento homeless services complex. James Flavy Coy Brown, who is 48 and suffers from a variety of mood disorders including schizophrenia, was discharged in February from Rawson-Neal to a Greyhound bus for Sacramento, a place he had never visited and where he knew no one.

Read more here:
Ya think? For more of his story and others, see the report. Nevada claims that they are usually shipped to family or even home after being hospitalized on vacation.

If this is what passes as mental health care in the United States, it is even worse than I had thought. I knew it is difficult to get mental health coverage, to get adequate long term care, and that institutionalization isn't an option until AFTER a crime is committed, but shipping sick people away for other people to deal with because you don't have the money for it? Irresponsible. That's government for you.

Sidenote: I told my husband about this story and he said, "Yeah, they shipped Harry Reid to D.C. years ago!"

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