Friday, May 20, 2011

a long ride to help

Is it just me or are young adolescents coming out of the woodwork with mental illnesses? I swear we see at least 3-4 thirteen or fourteen year olds a shift depressed and suicidal. Are their more of them or are the parents taking them for help now a days?

Mental health care is a farce in this country. Especially inpatient mental health. There is a shortage of psychiatrists and it seems like we are always short of beds. I guess mental health is not profitable. So our patients at times sit in the ER for up to 24 hours waiting for a bed.

Sometimes they are transferred to other hospitals in the city and sometimes even to another city in the state or neighboring state. A couple of weeks ago I transferred an adolescent 250 miles away to a hospital. For some reason the parents couldn't go with, so I sent this 14 year old 250 miles away by himself with medics.

Its really sad how we treat the mentally ill in this country.


rnraquel said...

None of the ER's where i worked as a Tech or RN had a true mental health unit. One had an itty bitty geriatric psych unit that was always full. It was bad. People would wait many hours with us or the social worker (if there was one on duty) trying to scrounge up a psych bed somewhere.
I remember once trying to explain in my out of practice Spanish how to get to a state mental health hospital 200 miles away to a frantic family member.
And like everything else in the hospital, it is definitely always worse when it is a kid.

Mark p.s.2 said...

*1903 U.S. mental illness hospitalizations. 1 in 500 Seriously mentally ill

*1955 U.S. mental illness hospitalizations. 1 in 300 S.M.I

*1987 U.S. Social Security Administration payments for the mentally ill. 1 in 75. S.M.I.

*2003 U.S. Social Security Administration payments for the mentally ill. 1 in 50. S.M.I.

*2005 (2008?) National Institute of Mental Health. 1 in 17 S.M.I.

and you think psychiatry is working?
Psychiatry is making people better?

You know that 500 pound patient you get, don't you ask yourself who enabled them? Who kept on feeding them food and why?

Psychiatry is not working, and you want more psychiatrists. Brilliant.

Ladyk73 said...

There is a serious shortage of psychiatrists. And about 1/10 of the amount of beds their were 20 years ago. Back in the day people spent a lifetime institutional. Now people are independent or in a group home, etc. Hospital stays are getting shorter and shorter. Someone in "long term" state hospitals only stay a few months now... So they end up in the local ER. At least most people end up in a pysch er

Eileen said...

I was told by a psych from Holland that they are now seeing many mental health problem in children who were put on Ritalin etc for ADHD as they get into teenage. They are now working on getting them off it before age 12 - problem being that these are now big kids needing to learn limits. It would have been much easier had it been worked on at ages 2 to 5.