Mental Health treatment in the US

Someone with a political/public presence was attacked and badly injured by their son. Sure something like this happens frequently — but in this case Austin Deeds was the son of Virginia State Senator R. Creigh Deeds. Gus Deeds committed suicide after attacking his father. Lack of treatment and lack of understanding about mental illness is a horrible problem in the US.

In the case of Deeds family — it was the mental health system that failed to admit Gus Deeds.

Austin Deeds, who was 24, had undergone a psychiatric evaluation Monday, and officials initially said the reason he was not admitted to a hospital was that no bed was available. But multiple nearby hospitals later confirmed that they had available space but were never contacted.

Involuntary commitment law of some sort is found in most states (who knows about the Southern  Bible Belt states?).

Speaking as someone who has experience with a family member who has a severe mental illness — there are signs long before any diagnosis. When it gets bad enough that the police are needed to transport the individual for an evaluation then why didn’t the mental health professionals make the effort to find a bed at another facility? Personally I’d like to know what the educational and experience of the people who “evaluated” Gus or Austin Deeds?

Obviously there was a disconnect somewhere — could be that the Senator’s Health Insurance only covered mental health admissions for that particular hospital? Whoever signed off on refusing Austin Deed’s Involuntary Commitment — needs to be reviewed. Was this person working for the Insurance Company?

Mental Health treatment and evaluation doesn’t seems to have entered the 21st Century.

The media will probably move on to the next sensational story. Where are the investigative journalists who follow the story and educate the public?



One Response

  1. […] the mental patient is turned away and sent home and becomes aggressive, someone is injured and the mental patient kills himself. (State: Virginia, Austin Deeds, son of State Senator Deeds. One would assume that State Senator […]

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