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Hogg Foundation for Mental Health News and Grants
Hogg Foundation for Mental Health

December, 2010



Austin police's use of force up, report says: Officials attribute rise to procedural changes, training

Austin American-Statesman

December 22, 2010


Austin police reported using more force against suspects in 2009, an increase that officials attribute to a change in how officers document such instances, according to an annual report. The number of reports rose to 1,703 last year from 1,152 in 2008 after police began requiring officers to electronically log such incidents from their patrol car computers instead of on paper, among other changes.  ...For instance, if three used force on one suspect, each would be required to submit a report.



HHSC inspector general resigns

Austin American-Statesman

December 21, 2010


Bart Bevers, inspector general of the state Health and Human Services Commission, is resigning. In a Dec. 10 letter, Bevers told Gov. Rick Perry, who appointed him in 2007, that his last day will be Jan. 7. As inspector general, Bevers investigates fraud, waste and abuse in programs such as Medicaid, food stamps and the Children's Health Insurance Program.





Congress Moves toward Final Adjournment in Passing "Continuing Resolution"

National Alliance on Mental Illness

December 22, 2010


The 111th Congress is expected to reach final adjournment today after passing a temporary extension of current FY 2010 discretionary spending levels through March 4, 2011 and passing landmark legislation to reform the HUD Section 811 program that develops supportive housing for non-elderly adults living with serious mental illness and other disabilities.



Docs insist on lead role

Health News Florida

December 22, 2010


Gov.-elect Rick Scott's transition team offered a controversial proposal this week to merge the Florida Department of Health and Agency for Health Care Administration. But doctors and public-health advocates immediately said one thing is not negotiable: A physician needs to be in charge.



31 Atalissa workers could receive $1.7 million

The Des Moines Register

December 23, 2010


Thirty-one of the disabled Atalissa men who worked for Henry's Turkey Service in recent years could be awarded a total of $1.7 million under a proposal put forth by the U.S. Department of Labor. If the request is approved by a federal judge and Henry's has the ability to pay the judgment, most of the mentally retarded workers would each collect $50,000 or more.



Mecklenburg mental health director resigns in wake of scandal

The Charlotte Observer

December 22, 2010


Mecklenburg County mental health director Grayce Crockett resigned Tuesday on the heels of a scandal involving a major contractor her department was supposed to oversee.  ...Mecklenburg commissioners also learned at their meeting Tuesday that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development will ask the county to repay $465,000 it had received to manage a federal mental health program.





Law Prompts Some Health Plans To Cut Mental-Health Benefits

The Wall Street Journal

December 23, 2010


Members of the Screen Actors Guild recently read in their health plan's newsletter that, beginning in January, almost 12,000 of its participants will lose access to treatment for mental-health and substance-abuse issues. The guild's health plan represents one of a small number of unions, employers and insurers that are scrapping such benefits for their enrollees because of a 2008 law that requires that mental-health and substance-abuse benefits, if offered, be as robust as medical or surgical benefits. By dropping such coverage, providers can circumvent the requirements.



Video: Insuring Your Health: Looking At The Changes 2011 Brings

Kaiser Health News

December 23, 2010


Michelle Andrews speaks with KFF's Jackie Judd about changes in lifetime insurance limits, keeping children insured, the new high-risk pools, rising health costs and consumers' misperceptions about the overhaul.



Major health insurers in California to resume offering individual policies for children

Los Angeles Times

December 23, 2010


The companies abruptly halted the sale of individual policies for kids in September rather than comply with provisions of the nation's new healthcare law. A new state law forced them to change course.,0,7056080.story





Critics make peace to join health reform

The Sydney Morning Herald (Sydney, Australia)

December 22, 2010


...The Australian of the Year, Patrick McGorry, and the Sydney psychiatric leader Ian Hickie have put aside their disillusion with Labor over its failure to back rhetoric with money for mental health at the election and joined an expert group to advise the government on priorities. The Mental Health Minister, Mark Butler, will announce today that the two will join nine others to examine ideas for a dramatic upgrading of mental health services, including steps to deal with mental disorders such as anxiety and depression among children.



London's Highfliers Turn to Therapy

The Wall Street Journal

December 21, 2010


...In the wake of the biggest global recession since World War II, several high-profile suicides in the City of London's financial district and costly trading errors attributed, at least partially, to sleep deprivation, banks are worried that top staff may be suffering unsafe levels of stress. As a result, financial companies in the City are becoming increasingly proactive in providing help for employees, usually in the form of psychotherapy, mental-health professionals say.





Rep. Patrick Kennedy's Legacy on Mental Health

The New York Times

December 22, 2010


In "The Capitol's Last Kennedy" (news article, Dec. 17), Ross K. Baker, a political science professor, appears to discount the tremendous impact Representative Patrick J. Kennedy has already had on brain research, to the benefit of veterans and others suffering from conditions like traumatic brain injury and mental illness. America is overdue in meeting the challenge of fully empowering research to overcome mental illness. We owe it to our veterans and other Americans to defeat these conditions.



On Mental Illness: Employment and Self Esteem of Mentally Ill People

Berkeley Daily Planet (Berkeley, CA)

December 21, 2010


In the course of battling a mental illness, a number of mental health consumers ultimately discover that regular employment is not a good fit. While "normal" people occasionally have a "bad day" in which their work isn't up to par, a person with a mental illness may have a bad day more often, and may need a work situation that can accommodate this factor. Such an accommodation isn't done in most companies--they may expect that their employees be efficient at all times.



Dallas resident's brave Christmas letter addresses 'irreversible mistake' of suicide

Dallas Morning News

December 19, 2010


If there's one place where life is perfect, it's in Christmas letters.  ...This is the most painful Christmas letter I have ever written because Will was usually the one to write our letters. This year has been a very difficult year for our family as Will is no longer with us. In February, Will died by suicide. We have talked here in recent months about suicide and about the shame, stigma and secrecy that surrounds it.





Adderall May Not Make You Smarter, But It Makes You Think You Are


December 21, 2010


Adderall, Ritalin and other "smart drugs" have become popular among college students and young professionals, who use them to enhance performance. The drugs are normally prescribed to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), but healthy students use them to get a leg up in school, by improving focus, concentration and memory. The question is, do they work?



Bipolar disorder with BPD marked by high aggression and impulsivity

MedWire News

December 23, 2010


Bipolar disorder patients with comorbid borderline personality disorder (BPD) show a heightened level of impulsivity and aggression as well as a markedly elevated rate of suicide attempts relative to those with bipolar disorder alone, study results show.



Empathy deteriorates with illness progression in schizophrenia

MedWire News

December 23, 2010


Patients with first-episode psychosis (FEP) show relatively preserved empathy, which appears to deteriorate with progression to more chronic schizophrenia, perhaps as a consequence of cognitive decline, study results show.



Stress Can Enhance Ordinary, Unrelated Memories


December 22, 2010


Stress can enhance ordinary, unrelated memories, a team of neuroscientists has found in a study of laboratory rats. Their results, which appear in the journal PLoS Biology, may bolster our understanding of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and could offer a pathway for addressing PTSD and related afflictions.



Being 'chilled out' can increase risk of obesity


December 21, 2010


People who seem to face stressful situations without blinking an eye may have an increased risk of health woes such as obesity and depression, according to a new study.



Children Who Were Abused Or Neglected Have Lower IQ In Teens

Medical News Today

December 22, 2010


University of Queensland research has found children who have been abused or neglected are likely to struggle academically during adolescence.



For One Man, It's All About Prevention and Wellness

Health Day News

December 22, 2010


Weight, sleep, exercise and more can all play a role in keeping mind and body healthy. Coming from my public-health background, I'm a really strong believer in prevention and wellness," Dougherty said.That means keeping both the mind and the body healthy. "I really think physical health and mental health are important counterbalances for the stresses we endure during the week," he explained.





Woman Diagnosed with ADHD Says 'Suddenly My Whole Life Makes Sense'

ABC News

December 21, 2010


John Dailey never knew why he was always so disorganized. His struggles in school grew into struggles at work. But when his 3-year-old daughter started to show signs of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, he realized that he had been seeing those very signs in himself his whole life.



Painting Pathways: Clubhouse builds confidence, skills for people with mental illness

Herald Times Reporter

December 22, 2010


She later was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, which caused mood swings ranging from depression to mania, according to the Mayo Clinic.  ...Hunner eventually came to the Manitowoc area where her parents retired. She had a place to stay, but she truly found her home at Painting Pathways.  ...It is one of more than 300 clubhouses worldwide that provides an environment where individuals whose lives have been disrupted by mental illnesses not only can build job skills, social and confidence but also restore their lives.


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