Mental Health Care

Lauren Silverman / KERA News

Hundreds of mental health specialists from across the state are gathered today in Downtown Dallas for the 28th Annual Texas Council of Mental Health Centers Conference.

Courtesy of Cindy Johnson

One of the toughest things about dealing with depression can be finding the right medication. It can take months, even years. As part of KERA’s Breakthroughs project, here’s a look at one woman’s struggle and the North Texas doctor who hopes to make the medication matching process less like trial and error.

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May 12th through May 18th is National Women’s Health Week. And it’s a good time to clarify how the Affordable Care Act impacts women.

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For years, sheriffs and disability rights groups have complained about the lack of treatment for the growing number of mentally ill inmates in Texas. Now, state legislators are considering a bill that would allow private companies to offer mental health services to inmates.

Texas spent $38.99 per capita on mental health care, making it 49th in the country for 2012. The Texas Tribune's Brandi Grissom says the dearth of spending on mental health resources has converted jails, emergency rooms and homeless shelters into "de facto asylums." Today she kicks off a series, called “Trouble in Mind,” about mental health in Texas’ criminal justice system. And tonight, KERA airs “Erasing the Stigma: Mental Illness and the Search for Solutions.” The public forum was presented by KERA, The Dallas Morning News and Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings and will air at 7 pm on KERA-Channel 13.

BJ Austin, KERA

Experts on mental illness did some myth-busting at last night’s public forum at the Dallas Performance Hall. The panelists were part of the discussion “Erasing the Stigma: Mental Illness and the Search for Solutions. 

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Why is there still such a stigma related to mental illness? How can the community work together to better identify and help young adults struggling with it?

That's the topic of the public forum "Erasing The Stigma: Mental Illness and the Search for Solutions."

Take a look back at our live blog. Audio will be available on KERA News soon; look for video later in the week. And KERA-Channel 13 will air an edited version of the forum on Feb. 20 at 7 p.m.

5 Key Questions About Mental Illness

Feb 5, 2013
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Two months ago, the tragedy in Newtown, Conn., shined a spotlight on two crucial issues: guns and mental health. Nationally, much of the attention has focused on gun laws and President Obama's call to strengthen them. But today, North Texas is focused on mental health -- and how to deal with mental illness. 

BJ Austin, KERA

Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings wants to change a culture of violence in the city. The mayor says he’s been wrestling with how to do that after last month's school shootings in Connecticut school shootings after last year's jump in domestic violence murders in Dallas. Step one: A Feb. 5 symposium on mental health co-sponsored by KERA and The Dallas Morning News.

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Mental health care has become a topic of discussion after last week’s school shootings. Two North Texans working in the field are calling for a new attitude and more money.