February 03, 2007

Treatment Options Needed in Canada

Vancouver, Canada's NorthShore Outlook has an interesting article following Janet Scott's road to recovery after experimenting with drugs at the young age of 13 and later becoming diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder.

"I was pretty lucky," said Scott, who despite her illness is living a productive and steady life. "I've known a lot of people who've fallen through the cracks because their needs haven’t been met."
Highlighted in the article is the urgent need in Canada for more comprehensive treatment options both in the community as well as in hospital settings.

The closing of long-term treatment facilities that used to provide housing and care in a nurturing, supportive environment have been devasting to people less fortunate than Janet. Some closings are said to have contributed to the number of homeless people on the streets and the rise in "self-medicating addicts" in downtown areas.

Psychiatrist Dr. Joan Bishop believes that 10% of people with more severe mental illnesses could be better served in community settings but only when a complete, comprehensive treatment support called "assertive community treatment" is in place, rather than communities implementing bits and pieces of it.

"Assertive community treatment"
consists of a type of psychiatric home care that involves a team of 11 health care professionals who work year round with patients in their own communities. When fully (as opposed to partially) implemented with patients suffering from psychotic disorders (schizophrenia, schizoaffective and bipolar) in Ontario, hospitals saw a 90% reduction in hospital use by those patients by the second year.

Dr. Bishop reminds people of two unavoidable facts - one is that "assertive community treatment", in order to work, MUST be implemented in full and, “When people get really, really ill no kind of community care can help. They need a ward with experts in patient care.”

Read the full article: Treatment Options

Special thanks to Dan for pointing us to this article.

Additional Reading:
California Adds $890 Million to Mental Health Services
Arizona Plans Overhaul of Mental Health Care
North Carolina Housing Mentally Ill in Nursing Homes


raloxifene. all is

Posted by: Mustafa at February 16, 2007 04:23 AM

Post a comment

Please enter this code to enable your comment -
Remember Me?
(you may use HTML tags for style)
* indicates required