Advocacy E-News January 23, 2017
January 23, 2017
ANCORA BANS FOOD, LAUNDRY FROM HOME
As of Jan. 1, visitors at New Jersey’s state psychiatric hospitals can no longer bring in food, beverages or items to patients. The new policy also prohibits visitors from laundering patients’ clothing outside the hospitals. The ban is upsetting family members and could affect patients’ treatment.
WHO WILL CARE FOR THE CAREGIVERS?
A recent report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine suggests that society’s reliance on this “work force” — largely taken for granted — is unsustainable. This volunteer army is put at great financial risk. Sixty percent of those caring for older family members report having to reduce the number of hours they work, take a leave of absence or make other career changes. Even worse, perhaps, is the physical and emotional toll of extended caregiving.
EDITORIAL: MEDICAID EXPANSION VITAL IN JERSEY
The expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act has been a godsend for thousands of people in New Jersey. Now, that Medicaid expansion could be lost under the proposed repeal of Obamacare now gathering steam in Washington. The loss of Medicaid dollars in New Jersey would be acutely felt, as it would come at the same time Gov. Chris Christie launches a bold new series of initiatives meant to combat the scourge of addiction in the state.
BILL TO TREAT, NOT JAIL, VETERANS WITH MENTAL ILLNESS CLEARS ASSEMBLY
An Assembly panel on Thurs. released legislation (A-4362) to send veterans suffering from mental illness, who have committed a non-violent crime, to a treatment program, instead of the criminal justice system where they are unlikely to receive treatment. According to Justice for Vets, one in five veterans has symptoms of a mental health disorder or cognitive impairment.
OCEAN COUNTY PROGRAM HAS SAVED 100 PEOPLE FROM HOMELESSNESS
In Ocean County, two mental health service agencies are responsible for running local chapters of a vital federal program. The initiative is called PATH, or Progressive Assistance to Transition from Homelessness. Caseworkers meet with the homeless people the program uncovers, taking them through a screening process and in many cases, assessing severe and persistent mental illness.