Advocacy E-News September 14, 2015
September 14, 2015
16 ANCORA STAFFERS ACCUSED IN PATIENT ASSAULTS
Sixteen state employees at Ancora Psychiatric Hospital were disciplined or fired for allegedly assaulting patients in a dozen cases between 2013and 2014, according to information obtained by the Courier-Post. The staffers pushed, slapped, bruised, or scratched patients, usually in response to an attack by a violent patient, the state’s data show. Criminal charges were pursued against staffers in four cases, including a sexual assault. A handful of assaults by patients resulted in major injuries to other patients or staff.
FEDS PRESS BERGEN REGIONAL MED. CENTER TO BETTER PROTECT STAFF
After at least eight employees were attacked this year by patients at Bergen Regional Medical Center — including being barricaded in a room — federal authorities are calling on the hospital to beef up security, improve training and better screen its patients to protect staff. The report, which raises many questions about staffing, training and security, marks the second time in two years that the federal agency has investigated the hospital.
LAWMAKERS: NEW JERSEY NEEDS MORE PSYCH BEDS
In New Jersey, when patients arrive in a hospital emergency department in a mental-health crisis, chances are awfully good they will be there for several days — and sometimes weeks — waiting for a short-term psychiatric bed. But in January, the NJ Department of Health consulted the NJ Department of Human Services and decided there were enough psychiatric beds and services to fill the community’s needs. It canceled a call for applications for certificates of need.
Now, more than a dozen state lawmakers want to know why.
SCHOOL BOARD COMMENTS CRITICIZED BY N.J. MENTAL HEALTH GROUP
Was it a colleague’s tripping over her words that prompted laughter among members of the Flemington-Raritan school board during a recent meeting, or a sign of insensitivity? The issue was raised on Thursday when NAMI-NJ, the state chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, sent out a press release and an audio clip from the school board’s Aug. 31 meeting.
AN ADVOCACY GROUP FOR DISCUSSING MENTAL HEALTH AT WORK
The Stability Network, founded in 2013 consists of nearly three dozen successful, working professionals who also contend with serious mental-health issues like bipolar disorder, schizophrenia or major depression, and are willing to speak publicly about their experiences.
Many people with such illnesses work—but chances are their bosses and co-workers don’t know about their conditions. Mental and emotional issues carry a stigma. Deciding whether to tell managers and co-workers can be extremely difficult.