“We need a new moon shot. Instead of going to outer space we need to go to inner space.”
Spoken like a true Kennedy.
“Neuroscientists today are like our astronauts.”
From autism to Parkinson’s disease to depression those neuroscientists are heroes changing lives explained former Rhode Island Congressman, Patrick Kennedy, the son of deceased Massachusetts Senator, Ted Kennedy. He told the audience at Grand Rapids Amway Grand Plaza Hotel mental health care should be the nation’s new Sputnik. Mental health care treated in terms of homeland security. Driving the point home the lack of mental health care military veterans are receiving.
“And they came home, and what do they call the signature wound of the war? Invisible. Now what’s a veteran supposed to think of their wound when someone calls it invisible? How are they supposed to feel about it? Well, as you might suspect, 18 veterans take their own life a day in this country.”
The co-sponsor of the Mental Health Parity & Addiction Equity Act of 2008, Kennedy struggles with bi-polar disorder and depression. The reality is there needs to be greater access to mental health care in the country.
As Michigan’s Lt. Governor Brain Calley pointed out, it can’t fall to the criminal justice system.
“The state is the largest provider in the state of mental health services through Medicaid but unfortunately also through our prison system.”
A deficiency Michigan leadership is working to correct.
“We can do better for people who come in contact with the criminal justice system. We’re not talking about hardened criminals here. We’re talking about people with issues and problems that we can fix.”
Calley chairs the Michigan Mental Health and Wellness Commission. He says it takes having systems in place similar to more mainstream physical health care.
Filling the need and working toward eliminating the stigma associated with mental health is Hope Network. President and CEO Phil Weaver and his staff served more than 20,000 patients last year
“We are here today to continue the discussion and learn to understand how mental illness contributes to the issues of violence to cancer to divorce and bankruptcy. It’s estimated that the cost to Michigan are more than $5 billion in lost productivity every year.”
For Weaver addressing mental health care is to get everyone “To focus on integrating the delivery of total healthcare.”
More WGVU News
Yesterday Hop candy delivers flavor without the hangover GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. December 19, 2014 | WGVU Today is National Hard Candy Day. The ingredients for making hard candy is basic; syrup, citric acid, food coloring and flavoring. And for kids young and old it’s the flavor that matters. WGVU discovered a one-of-a-kind candy taste earlier this year at the American Homebrewers Association Conference held at Grand Rapids’ DeVos Place. ListenDownload US Senate race in Michigan drew $56M in spending LANSING, Mich. December 19, 2014 | AP The race for U.S. Senate in Michigan drew more than $56 million in spending from the campaigns and outside supporters. Snyder signs bills to streamline some courts LANSING, Mich. December 19, 2014 | AP Gov. Rick Snyder has signed legislation designed to streamline the district court system in Michigan by creating more flexibility for magistrates. Snyder signs bill to expand nuisance abatement LANSING, Mich. December 19, 2014 | AP Gov. Rick Snyder has signed legislation to expand local governments' power to file nuisance complaints against homeowners and businesses suspected of illegal activity such human trafficking or gun crimes. Michigan Lottery sales reach record $2.6 billion LANSING, Mich. December 19, 2014 | AP Michigan Lottery ticket sales have reached a record $2.6 billion in the 2014 budget year. Tighter Internet sales tax collections are OK'd LANSING, Mich. December 19, 2014 | AP Amazon.com and other online stores will have to collect Michigan's sales tax on purchases under legislation headed to Gov. Rick Snyder. 168-year-old Grand Rapids house restored as treatment center GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. December 19, 2014 | AP A 168-year-old Grand Rapids mansion has been renovated for use as a private treatment center for women with alcohol and drug addictions. Cyberbullying legislation sent to Gov. Snyder LANSING, Mich. December 19, 2014 | AP Michigan school districts would have to include cyberbullying in their anti-bullying policies and report bullying data to the state under legislation going to Gov. Rick Snyder. Michigan voters to decide road funding tax hike LANSING, Mich. December 19, 2014 | AP A proposed tax hike aimed at improving Michigan's transportation infrastructure and schools is heading to voters. Authorities: Man arrested in 1990 beating death GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. December 19, 2014 | AP Authorities say a 56-year-old man has been arrested in the 1990 beating death of a 23-year-old in Grand Rapids. 11 charter authorizes remain at-risk of suspension LANSING, Mich. December 19, 2014 | AP The Michigan Department of Education has decided to keep the status of 11 of the state's charter school authorizers at-risk of possible suspension. Michigan gets $349,000 in cell 'cramming' deal LANSING, Mich. December 19, 2014 | AP Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette says the state will receive $349,000 as part of a $90 million national settlement with cellphone company T-Mobile.