Advocacy E-News April 6, 2017
April 6, 2017
DMHAS SCHEDULES CONSUMER AND FAMILY INFORMATION MEETING
The New Jersey Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) is scheduling a consumer and family member information-sharing meeting on April 19 at 10:30 at Trenton Psychiatric Hospital at the Stratton Auditorium to review the DMHAS Home to Recovery 2 Plan (Olmstead Plan).
For more information contact Susanne.Mills@dhs.state.nj.us
N.J. LEADERS NEED TO HELP THOSE WITH A MENTAL ILLNESS
Garden State lawmakers are considering a package of bills designed to shore up early intervention services for patients with mental illness. One of the proposals on the Legislature’s table would require the Department of Human Services, which contracts with local organizations, to expand these programs to every one of the state’s 21 counties.
NJ SATISFIES SUIT REQUIRING STATE TO FIND HOMES FOR MENTALLY ILL
Gov. Chris Christie’s administration has met the requirements of an eight-year-old lawsuit settlement that required New Jersey to provide community housing for people with significant mental illnesses and promptly discharge patients from state hospitals once they have been medically cleared to leave. The settlement, reached during Gov. Jon Corzine’s administration in 2009, produced 1,356 more supervised apartments for people with mental illness, according to a joint statement from acting state Human Services Commissioner Elizabeth Connolly, and the two legal advocacy groups that sued on patients’ behalf.
AOC ANNOUNCES EXPANSION OF COURT MENTAL HEALTH LIAISON PROGRAM
The New Jersey Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) has announced an expansion of the Municipal Court Mental Health Liaison Pilot Program in seven counties: Camden, Cumberland, Essex, Mercer, Monmouth, Ocean and Passaic. The program offers a mental health specialist in one or more municipal courts in the selected counties. The mental health specialist may help the defendants navigate the judicial process and link them to mental health services. Discussion of the available services between the Division of mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) and the Assignment Judges is to occur by the end of May.
FEDS ASKED TO PROBE 5 RECENT SUICIDES AT CUMBERLAND COUNTY JAIL
The U.S. Department of Justice has been asked to begin an investigation into five recent suicides at the Cumberland County Jail. Saying not enough attention has been paid to needs of those inmates with mental health or substance abuse issues at the jail, attorney Conrad J. Benedetto wrote to Acting Assistant U.S. Attorney General Tom Wheeler asking federal authorities to intervene. The five suicides took place over a 30-month period beginning July of 2014 and the last in February of this year.
HEALTH, PHARMA SECTORS WILL BE FTC FOCUS
In the midst of uncertainty about the direction antitrust and merger policy will take under the Trump administration, the acting head of the Federal Trade Commission said Friday it will prioritize enforcement in the health care and pharmaceutical sectors. The FTC will continue to police the pharmaceutical sector over concerns about the high costs of drugs. The agency notched a major victory in the area in 2013 with the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in FTC v. Actavis Inc., a landmark ruling in which the high court said so-called reverse-payment settlements between brand-name drug companies and generics makers should be subject to antitrust scrutiny under the rule of reason.