Mental Health

5:30am

Thu June 19, 2014
NPR News Investigations

National Data Confirm Cases Of Restraint And Seclusion In Public Schools

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 8:52 am

Carson Luke, 13, was injured when he was restrained at a school in Virginia when he was 10 years old.
Sarah Tilotta/NPR

The practice of secluding or restraining children when they get agitated has long been a controversial practice in public schools. Now, new data show that it's more common than previously understood, happening at least 267,000 times in a recent school year.

NPR worked with reporters from the investigative journalism group ProPublica, who compiled data from the U.S. Department of Education to come up with one of the clearest looks at the practice of seclusion and restraint.

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6:32am

Mon June 16, 2014
Mental Health

Now Considered 'Treatment Failure,' Colorado Moves Away From Seclusion, Restraint

Julie Reiskin, left, executive director of the Colorado Cross-Disability Coalition, and Marlene Murillo, a Coalition executive assistant, advocate on behalf of people with disabilities.
Joe Mahoney Rocky Mountain PBS I-News

In 2010, a man named Troy Geske died at the Colorado Mental Health Institute of Pueblo after being wrestled by staff members onto a bed, where he was restrained with straps and left by himself, face down. He asphyxiated.

Geske’s death resulted in the state’s paying a $775,000 settlement to his family and a ban on the use of prone restraint in state hospitals. The tragedy also accelerated a concerted effort in Colorado to limit the use of seclusion and restraint for people receiving mental-health treatment.

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8:01am

Mon June 9, 2014
Mental Health

Gov. Hickenlooper Has Signed A Ban On Long-term Solitary For The Mentally Ill

A sheriff's deputy checks on prisoners in the administrative segregation section, Unit 4C, of the Pueblo County, Colo., jail April 4, 2014.
Joe Mahoney Rocky Mountain PBS I-News

Gov. John Hickenlooper signed a bill Friday, June 6 that bans the practice of keeping seriously mentally ill prisoners in solitary confinement.

The bill, which passed with strong bipartisan support, won the support of advocates and rights groups like the American Civil Liberties Union, who say the isolation of prisoners with mental illness violates the constitution’s ban on cruel and unusual punishment and endangers public safety.

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6:53am

Mon June 2, 2014
Mental Health

Standards Unclear As Colorado's Mental Health Holds Rise

An empty patient room in the emergency psychiatric services ward at Denver Health in Denver on Nov. 11, 2013. More Coloradans are being put into involuntary mental-health treatment, but the standards for these holds are unclear.
Joe Mahoney Rocky Mountain PBS I-News

In 2013, more than 31,000 Coloradans were held involuntarily because they were thought to pose a danger to themselves or others, or were gravely disabled, because of a mental illness.

What constitutes a danger? It depends whom you ask.

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1:03am

Thu May 29, 2014
Shots - Health News

The Divide Over Involuntary Mental Health Treatment

Originally published on Thu May 29, 2014 11:19 am

Involuntary commitment to a hospital for mental illness can be a lengthy and complex process. A California law makes mandatory outpatient treatment an option.
iStockphoto

The attacks near the University of California, Santa Barbara, are renewing focus on programs aimed at requiring treatment for people who are mentally ill as a way to prevent mass shootings and other violence.

In California, a 2002 law allows authorities to require outpatient mental health care for people who have been refusing it. Proponents argue that this kind of intervention could prevent violent acts.

But counties within the state have been slow to adopt the legislation, and mental health professionals are divided over its effects.

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