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

June, 2011



Texas poised to pass bills seeking wholesale change in Medicaid, Medicare

Dallas Morning News

June 7, 2011


AUSTIN - Texas will soon try to completely rebuild its sprawling Medicaid program for the needy, as the Legislature is poised to pass bills seeking federal permission to do so, despite health providers' reservations. 



Texas veterans satisfied with legislative session

Fort Worth Star-Telegram

June 7, 2011


... Veterans were also thrilled with the passage of SB1739, which legislatively guaranteed that money generated by the sale of Texas Lottery veterans' scratch-off tickets would benefit veterans programs in communities statewide. 





Harris Co. to pay mother $3M in Taser death

KHOU Houston

June 8, 2011


HOUSTON -- Harris County will pay $3 million to a woman whose schizophrenic son died while he was in the custody of deputies. Shirley Nagel sued the county after her son died in 2005. Precinct One deputies were serving a mental health warrant and said Joel Don Casey resisted. Deputies Tasered him 18 times and his hands and feet were bound. The medical examiner said Casey died from psychotic delirium and heart disease that was impacted during the restraint. 



Dallas to pay $2.47 million for healthcare law violations

Fort Worth Star-Telegram

June 7, 2011


The city of Dallas has agreed to pay $2.47 million to the state of Texas and U.S. government to settle allegations that it violated healthcare fraud laws, according to the U.S. attorney's office. 



Fort Bend County social group provides support for women veterans

Sugar Land Sun

June 7, 2011


Studies show that war takes an emotional toll on women veterans just like it does men, but specialized services aren't as readily available to them. The social group Women Veterans and Supporters was created to provide a social network for women veterans to support one another, get connected with resources, and to simply be around others who share similar experiences/background. 



Another Methadone Addict Dead in Longview

Texas Tribune

June 7, 2011


Officials at the Texas Commission on Jail Standards and the Gregg County Sheriff's Office confirmed today that 30-year-old Micah Aaron Garner died at the Longview lockup on Monday night. The incident brings the total number of deaths in that facility to 10 since 2005. 



Bradley indicted in Lubbock burning death of mother

Lubbock Avalanche-Journal

June 7, 2011


A grand jury Tuesday formally charged a 32-year-old Lubbock man, accused of setting his mother on fire before terrorizing students, teachers and an administrator at an East Lubbock school last month. ... Bradley's father recently told The Avalanche-Journal the family opposed Bradley's release from MHMR and thought he should remain in a mental health facility because the family considered him a danger to himself and others. 



Texas teen to be tried as adult in sister's death

San Antonio Express-News

June 7, 2011


TYLER, Texas (AP) - A judge has ruled that a 15-year-old East Texas boy accused of killing his sister by shooting her in the head will stand trial as an adult. ... Mental health expert Jim Brown had recommended Anderson remain in the juvenile system. 



Ex-guard gets death penalty in 2 stabbings

Houston Chronicle

June 8, 2011


RICHMOND - Condemned in the deaths of his wife and mother-in-law, former prison guard Albert Turner lowered his head when a relative of the women spoke of forgiveness. ... McCann suggested that the Gulf War darkened Turner's personality, helped turn him into a paranoid seized by his delusion that his wife was having an affair, which led him to "snap" on the night of the killing. 





Mental Health America to Honor Senator Al Franken with Legislator of the Year Award

Mental Health America

June 7, 2011


ALEXANDRIA, Va. - Mental Health America this week will honor Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) with its Legislator of the Year Award for his leadership on mental health issues in Congress. 



L.A. Worries About State's Plan To Reduce Inmates

National Public Radio

June 7, 2011


Los Angeles is bracing for what happens when California releases more than 30,000 inmates from the state's prison system. The U.S. Supreme Court has ordered counties and other states to help ease state prison overcrowding, but L.A. jails already are well over capacity. ... We have a tough time providing housing for our own inmates. And who's going to pay for these individuals after six months? What do you do with a repeat offender? We don't have mental health programs to provide for our own people; now we're going to have all these other individuals coming in. This is really a Pandora's Box. 



Brown Moves to Shift Calif. Inmates to Local Jails

The New York Times

June 7, 2011


SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - Money is the key ingredient that will decide whether California can meet the dictates of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling requiring the state to slash its prison population by 33,000 inmates within two years, sheriffs, police chiefs, counties and corrections officials said Tuesday. But questions abound on whether the Legislature will sign off on tax extensions to pay for shifting thousands of convicts from state prisons to local jails, whether voters will approve the taxes, whether the state can meet the deadlines set by the high court and how the shift will play out at local jails around the state. 





On the Web: State Refor(u)m

Philanthropy News Digest

June 7, 2011


An initiative of the National Academy for State Health Policy and funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, State Refor(u)m is a Web portal that connects state health officials looking for implementation information and assistance to their peers and other experts who have relevant resources and experiences to share. Under the ACA, states are required to implement reform provisions to foster healthcare excellence. State Refor(u)m and its users provide tools and information to aid states in meeting those requirements. 



Study Sees Cuts to Health Plans

The Wall Street Journal

June 8, 2011


A report by McKinsey & Co. has found that 30% of employers are likely to stop offering workers health insurance after the bulk of the Obama administration's health overhaul takes effect in 2014. The findings come as a growing number of employers are seeking waivers from an early provision in the overhaul that requires them to enrich their benefits this year. At the end of April, the administration had granted 1,372 employers, unions and insurance companies one-year exemptions from the law's requirement that they not cap annual benefit payouts below $750,000 per person a year. 





UK Government Plans For Mentally Ill Prisoners Are Unrealistic

Red Orbit

June 7, 2011


Government plans to divert more mentally ill people out of the criminal justice system and into mental health services are unlikely to be achieved, according to new research from Queen Mary, University of London. In a study published in the International Journal of Law and Psychiatry, researchers estimate that there are over 8,000 prisoners with schizophrenia and other psychoses in prisons in England and Wales. 





Have we misunderstood mental illness?

The Washington Post

June 7, 2011


Marcia Angell thinks so, and so do three new books on the subject: When it was found that psychoactive drugs affect neurotransmitter levels in the brain, as evidenced mainly by the levels of their breakdown products in the spinal fluid, the theory arose that the cause of mental illness is an abnormality in the brain's concentration of these chemicals that is specifically countered by the appropriate drug. For example, because Thorazine was found to lower dopamine levels in the brain, it was postulated that psychoses like schizophrenia are caused by too much dopamine. Or later, because certain antidepressants increase levels of the neurotransmitter serotonin in the brain, it was postulated that depression is caused by too little serotonin. 





Women Exposed to Combat Trauma as Resilient as Men: Study

HealthDay News

June 7, 2011


Male and female military personnel exposed to combat zone trauma tend to experience similar mental health problems and recover at the same rate, a new study reveals. The finding -- the first to examine the role of gender on combat-linked stress after deployment -- was based on a survey completed by American men and women deployed between October 2007 and July 2008 in Iraq and Afghanistan. 



What Mom Thinks Matters When It Comes To Mental Illness

Medical News Today

June 8, 2011


A new study led by a Northern Illinois University sociologist shows that while family members often provide critical support, they also can sometimes be the source of stigmatizing attitudes that impede the recovery of mentally ill relatives. 



When Prompted, Many Cancer Patients Indicate They Want Treatment For Depression, Smoking, Polaris

Medical News Today

June 8, 2011


A clinical trial launched by Polaris Health Directions is off to a strong start with more than 100 of the planned 1,000 patients enrolled within the first six weeks. The research is examining whether using an automated assessment and referral system developed by Polaris can improve quality of life and reduce long-term costs related to poor mental health and high health care utilization among people with cancer. 



Mood state linked to differences in gray matter density in BD patients

Med Wire News

June 8, 2011


Results from a preliminary US study suggest that patients with bipolar disorder (BD) display differences in gray matter density according to mood state. 



Depression symptoms common in schizophrenia patients

Med Wire News

June 8, 2011


Symptoms of depression are common in patients with stable schizophrenia who have not been previously been diagnosed with the mood condition, results from a Spanish study show. The researchers also found that depression symptoms are not secondary to other symptoms of schizophrenia or the adverse effects of medication. 





BP Magazine

National Alliance on mental Illness

Spring 2011


In this issue:

  • Family matters: Living with seasonal cyclers
  • Dynamos under pressure
  • My story: Rock solid
  • SOUNDOFF! Relapse
  • Mind over mood: Moving beyond mindlessness
  • Talk therapy: 7 ways to help your partner help you 





Lester Smith, Houston's wildcatter of philanthropy: He may be an enigma to some in the oil industry, but his giving speaks for itself

Houston Chronicle

June 7, 2011


Lester Smith had been making multimillion-dollar donations to Houston health institutions for the better part of a decade when he learned about the local community's tragic predicament. The medical breakthroughs Smith's and other philanthropists' gifts were helping make possible often weren't benefitting poor people, doctors told him, because by the time they'd get an appointment at the Harris County Hospital District, their disease was too advanced to do much good.


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