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Mental Health Freedom and Recovery Act

Posted Oct 17 2010 7:18am

 

The mental health system in the United States is in need of major reform.  The piece that follows is a is a vision for congressional legislation.  Once passed and signed into law, it will serve as a beacon of hope for nations around the world.

Mental Health Freedom and Recovery Act

Protection of Constitutional Rights
 
  • The Mental Health Freedom and Recovery Act will ensure that  Constitutional rights  are protected for individuals who have been diagnosed with severe mental health conditions.
  • The act will uphold the spirit of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and ensure that  least restrictive options  are made available. 
  • The act will create a universal psychiatric advance directive  to be respected in all fifty states that allows a person to refuse any/all conventional psychiatric treatment in lieu of safer, more effective means to address psychosis and/or trauma , or the right to opt for a small amount of a psychiatric drug, and/or for a limited period of time until a psychosis has passed.

System Transformation    

  • The act will transform the mental health system from an illness-management model to one that offers hope and that promotes  optimal mental health and recovery .

 Recovery Model    

  • The act will place those who have been given psychiatric labels in the driver’s seat with the most successful model yet to be found – one that is  self-directed .
  • The act will promote consumer-run and peer-supported programs at every level of the mental health system.
  • These groups will be involved in every aspect of this legislation, from beginning to end, to ensure it is drafted in a way that addresses the concerns of those who have survived the trauma of treatment from a broken system , with their involvement in all committee hearings until a final bill is passed in both houses of Congress and signed into law.

Informed Consent   

Non-Profit, 501(c)(3) Organizations   

Treatment Options    

Psychiatric Drug Withdrawal Centers    

  • The act will promote private, non-profit involvement with psychiatric drug withdrawal .
  • These centers will be funded by fines imposed on drugmakers involved in the illegal research and/or marketing of psychotropics.
  • Drugmakers will also pay the costs of all psychiatric drugs used in outpatient care for anyone who is  addicted and/or chooses to taper off due to the long-term risks of these drugs, regardless of the time it takes to withdraw slowly and safely .

Mental Health Recovery Centers   

  • The act will make certain that there are unlocked, non-drug (or less-drug) treatment centers that are residential, not institutional, such as Earth House and Soteria-Alaska  in each of the states.
  • The act will promote competition and allow these private recovery centers to serve the needs of citizens who opt for integrative approaches rather than the existing state hospital or conventional psychiatric system by establishing a voucher program whereby freedom of choice will be put into action by Medicaid and Medicare recipients.

Federal Government   

  • Due to the risks involved in conventional psychiatric treatment, no person will be required to show “ compliance ” in order to be eligible to apply for and/or to continue to receive SSI/Medicaid, SSDI/Medicare by opting for safer and more effective treatment .
  • The act will ensure that psychiatric drugs that were illegally researched and/or marketed by will no longer be paid for in Medicaid, Medicare and Veterans Affairs programs .
  • The act will require the Medicaid, Medicare and Veterans Affairs programs to pay for the costs of integrative approaches for children and adults who are disabled, rather than forcing institutionalization and/or psychiatric drugs.
  • Independent living councils  will be required to provide information on informed consent, recovery support, integrative approaches for mental wellness and psychiatric drug withdrawal centers .
  • Any college or university that receives federal funding will be required to provide information in these four areas to its students in counseling, social work, psychology or related areas of study.
  • Any medical school that receives federal funding will be  required to provide the same.
  • Federal grant priority will be given to those schools that expand curriculum in these areas.
Federal Research
  
States
 
  • The state vocational rehabilitation (VR) agencies will be required to provide information on informed consent, recovery support, integrative approaches for mental wellness and psychiatric drug withdrawal centers .
  • Each state will be required to form a Governor’s Committee or other agency to disseminate information to city, county and state agencies about the risks of psychiatric drugs – to include their use in nursing homes and Medicaid , foster care and juvenile justice systems.
  • Each state will be required to restore the cemeteries of state psychiatric hospitals and/or allow private groups access to these sites for this purpose
  • Each state will be required to allow for the study of integrative medicine and nutrition, along with non-drug approaches for recovery from trauma in a juvenile correctional facility.
  • Each state will be required to allow consumer choice for its citizens who have been diagnosed with severe mental health conditions, to include safe places to overcome a psychosis, withdrawal from psychiatric drugs and centers to learn more about recovery and integrative approaches to achieve mental wellness .
  • Each state will allow professionals who are well-versed in their respective arts and sciences to practice individualized medicine without fear of reprisal from state medical boards .
  • These topics are due top priority at the annual meeting of Governors.

Parental Authority   

  • The act will preserve the rights of parents to seek and find the safest and most effective treatments available for their children, including those who suffer from symptoms of autism  without threat from the government.
  • The act will require Medicaid programs to pay for the costs of integrative approaches for children who are disabled, rather than forcing institutionalization and/or psychiatric drugs.

Spiritual Component   

Take Action

Contact

Yours in liberty and wellness,
 
Duane Sherry, M.S.  
 


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