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

February, 2012



Homes for the Homeless: MDHA's Plan to End Chronic Homelessness in Dallas By 2015

Dallas Observer

February 20, 2012


One of the more intriguing council briefings tomorrow will be given by an old friend of Mayor Mike Rawlings: Mike Faenza, president and CEO of the Metro Dallas Homeless Alliance. The title of his PowerPoint isn't very sexy -- "Permanent Supportive Housing Plan" -- but contained within is what Faenza hopes is a blueprint for ending chronic homelessness in the city of Dallas by 2015. ..."Projecting 1,800 units is a lot of new units to add on to the almost 2,100 we have in place, and we need to minimize new cases to 800 to 1,000 over the next four years, which means the public mental health system needs to pay attention to housing.



Opinions Mixed as Managed Care Comes to Valley

Texas Tribune

February 21, 2012


Managed health care services, which had been the subject of a recent moratorium in three Rio Grande Valley counties, will soon be available for Medicaid patients in those counties and the rest of the Valley. ... Advocates of managed health care say the program has proven to be cost-effective in parts of the state where it has been implemented. But others say that managed care will not meet the unique needs of the Valley. 



Gulf Coast Center expands children services

The Galveston Daily News

February 21, 2012


LEAGUE CITY - Beginning March 1, Gulf Coast Center, the mental health authority for Galveston and Brazoria counties, will offer its children services program at 4444 W. Main St., League City. "We are expanding programs and services in order to address the rapidly growing population in the northern part of Galveston County," Melissa Tucker, director of children services, said.



Howard County Volunteer Fire Department Using Break to Heal Physically and Mentally

CBS 7 - West Texas

February 20, 2012


..."It's letting us heal physically and when we heal physically we heal mentally because we're not stressed all the time," said Tommy Sullivan, Howard County Volunteer Fire Department Chief. The time has allowed them to spend more time with their families, which Sullivan says has a huge effect on their mental health. 



Judge holds hearing on terror suspect's competency

Wall Street Journal

February 21, 2012


LUBBOCK, Texas - A federal judge in West Texas will hear evidence and arguments on the mental competency of a Saudi man accused of trying to make a weapon of mass destruction. 



Elizabeth Smart kidnapper serving sentence in Fort Worth

Fort Worth Star-Telegram

February 20, 2012


...His wife, Wanda Ileen Barzee, is serving her sentence at Federal Medical Center, Carswell, the Fort Worth facility for inmates who need special medical and mental health services. 



New punishment trial for cop killer to get underway

KTRK - Houston

February 21, 2012


HOUSTON (KTRK) -- A convicted cop killer is expected back in court today for re-sentencing. ...The question the jury has to answer is not whether Buntion is guilty or not guilty. It is whether he should be executed or remain in prison. Buntion shot Officer Irby in the head during a traffic stop in 1990 and was sentenced to death row. But an appeals court overturned his sentence and ruled the original jury didn't have enough information on Buntion's mental illness and troubled childhood, and ordered a re-sentencing. 





A suicidal veteran's plea for help could land him in jail

Washington Post

February 20, 2012


... Shortly after Duvall was released from the hospital, he found himself in trouble again. This time with the law. Duvall, who served in the Navy and lives outside Roanoke, now faces four federal counts related to manufacturing and possessing the homemade gun, which could lead to a 40-year prison sentence. Veterans groups and mental health advocates warn that Duvall's prosecution could have a chilling effect on distressed veterans who might be contemplating suicide. 



Suicide Rates Highest In 15 Years, US

Medical News Today

February 20, 2012


Between 2008 and 2009, the suicide rate in the United States rose by 2.4%, with a reported 36,909 suicide deaths, according to a report by the CDC. In 2008, 13.4% of individuals who committed suicide experienced job and financial problems, a report by the CDC revealed in August 2011. Furthermore, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, an emergency crisis hotline, revealed that the volume of calls they received between 2010 and 2011 increased by 14%. 



Identities of 5 in state care elude authorities

Chicago Tribune

February 21, 2012


Since at least 1976, the woman who calls herself Seven has lived without a formal identity. ... She is one of five state wards in Illinois whose identities are a mystery, people commonly known as a Jane or John Doe. Each one has mental and/or physical health issues and is bound in layers of bureaucracy made worse by the lack of a name or Social Security number. Taxpayers, hospitals or nursing homes pick up the tab for their care, sometimes for years.,0,1810787.story 



Orange County teen is missing after release from jail

Los Angeles Times

February 21, 2012


A mentally ill Orange County teen who "aged out" of treatment programs last year and went off his medication during a 60-day jail stay has been missing since his predawn release nearly three weeks ago, his distraught mother said Monday. Matt Hoff, 18, hasn't contacted his family in Ladera Ranch since he was let out of the Orange County Central Jail in Santa Ana at 4 a.m. on Feb. 7.,0,2965176.story 



Utah has one of the highest suicide rates in nation

The Salt Lake City Tribune

February 21, 2012


The number of suicides in Utah continues to climb, making it - once again - home to one of the highest suicide rates in the country. According to preliminary data from the Office of Vital Records and Statistics, 495 Utahns took their own lives in 2011, compared with 455 in 2010. 





A push to train more primary-care doctors

Los Angeles Times

February 19, 2012


... The vast majority of U.S. medical school students have long pursued careers as neurologists, cardiologists or other specialists, resulting in an acute shortage of primary-care physicians that will only get worse as more family doctors retire. The search for solutions is taking on new urgency because healthcare reform will provide an estimated 30 million more Americans with health coverage in two years. And fielding more family physicians is key to the savings promised by backers of the healthcare overhaul.,0,250503.story 



10 counties expand medical coverage for low-income residents

Los Angeles Times

February 18, 2012


Nearly two years before the federal health reform law kicks in, 10 California counties have expanded medical coverage to more than 250,000 people who were previously uninsured, according to new state data. They are among 47 counties participating in the state's Bridge to Reform program, which provides health coverage for low-income residents and enables them to receive free care at their local public clinics and hospitals.,0,5298032.story 





How health-care costs are taxing the middle class

Washington Post

February 17, 2012


... At what point is a middle-class American - who has insurance - allowed to complain about the increasing taxes we pay to finance the national health-care system? After all, what is a tax but an assessment imposed by authority on citizens for public purposes? And that seems a fair description of how our health-care system works. The federal government tells companies which services they must provide. In turn, the companies raise rates so they can meet these requirements and still make a profit. Basically, each time a federal official tells us that "insurance companies" will pay for, say, free condoms or expanded coverage, premiums paid by the middle class go up. Call it an unofficial tax, one collected by private industry instead of Washington. 



You might not choose Parkland, but it's still your problem

Dallas Morning News

February 20, 2012


But why should you care about a scathing report detailing Parkland Memorial Hospital's failure to meet even minimum patient safety standards? Parkland, Dallas County's charity hospital, is where the poor people go. You have a nice home and a job and health insurance. ...So if a consultants' report says patients are at imminent risk of "serious injury, harm, impairment or death," it's not really your problem, right? Except it is. And you should know better. For one thing, that's just not how reasonable people should think. Wealthy, poor, homed or homeless, no one in America deserves such horrific basic care. For another, if you own property in Dallas County, you're paying for it. Shouldn't you expect more? 



Ignoring reality doesn't aid healing

San Angelo Standard-Times

February 20, 2012


SAN ANGELO, Texas - In my January column I mentioned that cognitive distortions can contribute to greater discomfort in a person's pain experience. I will address some of these distortions that are maladaptive and inconsistent with reality. ... Add to this the unwillingness to tolerate some frustration, be it ever so small, and we have a very angry, unhappy patient, who thinks doctors do not do enough, mental health providers do not know anything about pain, physical therapists hurt too much and these providers do not know what they are doing because the patient thinks he should be better by now. ...Psychotherapists can help patients get rid of or tone down these cognitive distortions, so that patients can be empowered to cope with pain realistically, reducing misery and improve quality of life 



Make a difference for foster children

Your Conroe News

February 21, 2012


....Unlike me, however, many never find a loving permanent home. They grow up in a group home, or are shuffled from foster home to foster home. Tragically the majority of children who "age out" of foster care are not equipped to live as productive adults. Statistics show that they are less likely to graduate from high school. They are less likely to be employed and, even when they are employed, are more likely to have jobs that do not pay a living wage. Moreover, they are more likely to experience violence, homelessness and mental illness. And they are more likely to fall victim to substance abuse and to be incarcerated. Females are more likely to have unwanted pregnancies. Our nation's foster children deserve better. They deserve the chance to be properly prepared for adulthood. 





Mood state influences odor detection in bipolar disorder patients

Med Wire News

February 21, 2012


Odor-detection sensitivity is differentially associated with mania and depression in patients with bipolar disorder, results from a US study show. Writing in Bipolar Disorders, Dolores Malaspina (New York University School of Medicine) and team observe that a number of brain regions that show functional and anatomic abnormalities in patients with bipolar disorder are involved in olfactory processing, such as the amygdala, hippocampus, and orbitofrontal cortex. 



Childhood trauma linked to reduced cognition, amygdala volume in FEP

Med Wire News

February 21, 2012


A history of childhood trauma is associated with reduced cognitive performance and amygdala volume in patients with first-episode psychosis (FEP), UK research suggests.,_amygdala_volume_in_FEP.html 





Addressing Trauma through Mental Health First Aid

National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare


As many as 90 percent of those receiving mental health services have a history of trauma and more than 50 per cent of the general population has also experienced traumatic events. How can those certified in Mental Health First Aid be cognizant of the possibility of trauma as they facilitate early intervention and support for developing mental and substance use disorders and crisis resolution for psychiatric emergencies? How do they ask the right questions and respond appropriately. Mental Health First Aid-ers, instructors, and others are invited to join us for this deep dive by trauma-informed care experts. February 22, 2012, 2:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. eastern time. 





Elton John AIDS Foundation Awards $3.2 Million in Grants

Philanthropy News Digest

February 19, 2012


The New York City-based Elton John AIDS Foundation has announced more than $3.2 million in grants to assist marginalized populations that are vulnerable to HIV infection. In its third and final grantmaking round of 2011, the foundation awarded nineteen new and twenty-nine renewal grants to organizations working in the areas of HIV prevention, clinical and mental health care, rights advocacy, and support services for people living with HIV/AIDS in the Unites States, Haiti, and Latin America.;jsessionid=BHR0U50VN4D0VLAQBQ4CGXD5AAAACI2F?id=371400006 




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