I am reporter Julie Mack and I am here to discuss Michigan’s mental health crisis and the glaring issues in the state’s mental health system. Natasha Robinson, a mother personally affected by this crisis, is here with me. AMA!
For far, far too long, psychiatric disorders have been shrouded in shame and stigma, and mental health has been the poor stepchild of the American health-care system. It’s estimated that half of Americans will experience a mental-health issue at some point in their life. Half. And yet, the stigma lingers. The stigma is a killer. Literally. In Michigan, it takes an average of 19 phone calls to find an in-patient psychiatric bed. 33 counties in Michigan lack a psychiatrist. Meanwhile, our reporting shows the number of suicides in the state hit a record high in 2017.
It’s an issue that hits home for me. And it hits home for Natasha Robinson. She was willing to share her story with all of us about her son, who was six years old the first time he tried to kill her. She is with us today and her story, along with our reporting on Michigan’s mental health crisis, is below.
- Nowhere to turn: Families struggle as psych beds disappear from hospitals
- ‘Demons’ haunt an 8-year-old and help is hard to find
- A mom’s story: ‘My son is trying to kill me’
- To hell and back: One woman’s journey to recovery from mental illness
- 12 ways to address Michigan’s shortage of in-patient psychiatric beds
- Spending more on mental health has bipartisan support, lawmakers say
- Michigan’s mental health crisis is affecting all of us. Something must be done.