1 Comments for this article

Tags: ,


One in four adults in the US will suffer from a mental health problem, ranging from mild depression to severe schizophrenia. Many patients rely on medication alone to keep them on track. Mental health experts say it’s when a patient neglects to take their medication, that problems can take place. Experts say it’s a cycle; patients take their meds until they feel better, and think they’re cured. Jeri Fox said her brother, Donald, suffers from a mental illness, and all she wants is for him to get the help he needs. "He’s been mentally ill, saddled with several monkeys on his back since he was 16." Donald has found himself on the wrong side of the law on more than one occasion. "He was getting himself in trouble without medication,” Jeri said. Mental health providers in North Carolina are there to prescribe medication and provide support. From there, it’s up to the individual. It’s up to the patient to seek out more intense treatment as well. "We cannot force individuals into treatment,” said Foster Norman, Director of the Southeastern Center for Mental Health. Norman says the involuntary commitment laws in North Carolina are so strict, they can only commit individuals that are a danger to themselves or to society. "There is no cure, for the array of what we consider mental health illnesses. But there are effective treatments,” Norman said. No matter how mild, mental health illnesses cannot be cured. Support from family and friends is a form of treatment. That’s why Fox wants the public to know that everyone is affected by mental illness in one way or another. “They should not turn their noses up, or think these people are strange to live next to. Cause they are the kindest heartest people that have been affected by the ruins of society." Foster Norman hopes the state will loosen the involuntary commitment laws in the future, but right now he is focused on balancing the budget and creating more mental health services at the local level.

Comment on this Story

  • TBL108

    I’m not sure as for other counties but my county has a real problem with mental health issues. There are people in our society that actually need to be in a mental health hospital so they can be watched on a daily basis and their meds montiored for them. However there are several people in society that abuse the metal health services as a way to gain access to medication, as well as a free check!!. The state needs keep dortha dix open and house the people in society that actually need to be housed instead of releasing them back in to genreal population for what they call self treatment. Our mental hospitals have gotten to relaxed on taking patients in and administering meds for three days and then returing them to society. The problem with this is that these people that acutally need the treatment have to depend on themselves to stay on top of there meds in order to function in society. Another rising problem is our local health care homes, instead of contacting the private provider for treatment options and medication they revert to taking out ivc paperwork. The reason this is done is either because they don’t know how to take control of the situation they are having with the patients or either they just dont want to deal with the paitent at that time and involuntary committment in the best solution for them. The solution for these problems is to hospitalize the ones that actually need to be treated around the clock, have more intense testing and evaluations for the patients that we call “frequent flyers” that are there to obtain more medication so that our mental health system is not abused. Also there needs to be more training on the local level for nursing homes and private nursing homes so they will know the proper protocol with mental paitents instead of filing ivc’s whenever they dont want to deal with patients.
    I hope we can get on track shortly even if these arent the answers….


Related News