The following text is adapted from a press release of Michigan Senator Debbie Stabenow. AMHF applauds the efforts behind this enlightened legislation. In mid-December 2013, the United States Senate Finance Committee approved the bipartisan Excellence in Mental Health Act, authored by Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and Roy Blunt (R-MO), to expand access to community mental-health […]By: Evander Lomke
From the December 31, 2013, issue of National Review: America’s mental-health system is a failure, as the massacres perpetrated by deranged individuals in Newtown, Aurora, and elsewhere have made tragically clear. While 10 million people in America suffer from serious mental illness—including 200,000 on our streets, and 300,000 in our prisons—the federal government has in […]By: Evander Lomke
At eighty-five-plus years (But who’s counting the timeless work of a great man?), Eugene Kennedy—former Roman Catholic priest, theologian, philosopher, novelist, and, oh yes, compassionate psychologist—remains ever relevant and ahead of our times. As we approach the first anniversary of the Newtown-Sandy Hook massacre, with all the horrors and trauma engendered, Eugene Kennedy was way […]By: Evander Lomke
See the Third Annual Report, to Octoer 31, 2013, of The American Mental Health Foundation here.By: Evander Lomke
AMHF presented during Poster Session IV of the 2013 Annual Meeting of NEPA and the Northeast Conference for Teachers of Psychology on October 19, 2013. Many new friends were made at this two-day meeting (Oct. 18-19) as word spread on the work of the Foundation. Special thanks go to Dr. Jeanine Skorinko of Worcester Polytech […]By: Evander Lomke
This subject interests me on many levels. At the beginning of my career in clinical psychology, I worked directly with hundreds of people with developmental disabilities. Serving as an expert witness for parents, I helped to implement the federal laws noted below. Later, as clinical director of a day-treatment program, and serving as a Board […]By: William Van Ornum, Ph.D.
AMHF Books will exhibit and sell its books, at special half-price discount, at the Brooklyn Book Festival: rain or shine, Sunday, September 22, Booth 72. Please come and learn more about the work of AMHF.By: Evander Lomke
For several years the New York Times has devoted investigative reporting to the issue of abuse in group homes for the developmentally disabled in New York State. This can be an extremely sensitive topic for parents, who read a story like this and wonder how widespread the problem really is. The Times article implies that […]By: William Van Ornum, Ph.D.
Dr. Henry Kellerman—author and/or editor of nearly thirty books, including Personality: How It Forms and Anatomy of Delusion (from American Mental Health Foundation Books in 2014)—is the latest member of the foundation Professional Advisory Board. Kellerman, who has a practice in New York City, is also the author of Sleep Disorders: Insomnia and Narcolepsy; The […]By: Evander Lomke
This is the final blog in the AMHF series of twenty-one films relating to “Hollywood and Psychiatry.” These blogs have taken us from ca. 1921, and the release of silent classic The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, a mere three years before The American Mental Health Foundation was organized, into the twenty-first century. The first blog […]By: Evander Lomke
The Washington Post reports (August 2, 2013) that a woman with Down syndrome can go against the wishes of her parents regarding where she lives. Jenny Hatch had been under temporary guardianship, being in group homes, and thus “removed from the life she knew.” Hatch wanted to continue living with her friends while continuing to […]By: William Van Ornum, Ph.D.
Experts in showing women the world leading to psychological fulfillment, Joanne and David Gavin will be talking and signing copies of the new AMHF publication Live Your Dreams, Change the World, on Sunday, August 4, 4 p.m., Inquiring Minds bookstore, 6 Church Street, New Paltz, New York. Please join us for this inspiring program.By: Evander Lomke
Reuters announced two patient deaths occurring with the administration of Zyprexa, an anti-psychotic medication often used to treat schizophrenia: “Both patients died three to four days after receiving the drug, and both had very high levels of the drug in their bloodstreams, the FDA said on its website on Tuesday. “The medicine’s package insert carries […]By: William Van Ornum, Ph.D.
Today’s Washington Post offers yet another article on the effect of (often) well-meaning privacy laws when they are applied to potentially violent persons who are not following treatment guidelines or showing premonitory signs of becoming psychotic along with a chance of potential violence. Wide-ranging privacy laws came into effect under the Health Insurance Privacy and […]By: William Van Ornum, Ph.D.
For three days last week American Mental Health Foundation Books shared a booth with its distributor, Lantern, at the annual BookExpo America—which is held at the Jacob Javits Center on New York City’s West Side. (New York remains the publishing capital of North America, even with the multitude of changes the industry has seen.) The […]By: William Van Ornum, Ph.D.
A feature story in today’s Washington Post, written by Stephanie McCrummen, offers an intensive look at the week of a 19-year-old man who, two years ago, was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia. It is the story of Spencer Haskell, and of his mom, Naomi, who has taken on the task of monitoring her son and making […]By: William Van Ornum, Ph.D.
Dr. Joyce Brothers, who paved the way for television figures as diverse as Dr. Ruth K. Westheimer and Dr. Drew Pinsky, and was essential in making the mass-cultural discussion of deep-seated and uncomfortable emotions in the U.S. a more open forum, died yesterday. As my friend notes in the Los Angeles Times obituary—which quotes him […]By: Evander Lomke
This is the first weekend showing of a movie that filmgoers and literary lions alike have been waiting for: The Great Gatsby. Everyone and everything is enmeshed. There are affairs. Grand parties throw people who would not normally meet each other together. The excesses of the Jazz Age coexist with the growing economic conditions that […]By: William Van Ornum, Ph.D.
Here are some worthwhile books that can be ordered from the American Counseling Association (ANA): 1. Hays, D. G. (2013). Assessment in Counseling: A Guide to the Use of Psychological Assessment Procedures. Fifth Edition. This is a bestselling text, and the latest version includes updates and changes in assessment procedures. Test selection, interpretation of findings, […]By: William Van Ornum, Ph.D.
Most of us, unless we have the personalities of saintliness, find ourselves in an irritable mood once in a while. Parents may be particularly prone to these episodes. One hopes that they pass without even a cranky word; although it’s difficult to stifle one’s facial expression. Justin Meyer, writing in the Washington Post, brings refreshing […]By: William Van Ornum, Ph.D.
Once known as Multiple Personality Disorder (MPD), Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) is the subject of film number eighteen of twenty-one in the AMHF series on psychiatry in Hollywood. The Three Faces of Eve covers a most controversial disorder—often outright debunked as the current (as of this writing) DSM-4 had made significant changes to the diagnosis. […]By: Evander Lomke
As Edward R. Murrow said, there are two sides to every story. Our previous probing into an increase and acceleration in funding for research into the brain waxed positively. A different viewpoint—now taken by major pharmaceutical industries—suggests that their interest in brain research is waning. Reuters reports the following: “Many pharmaceutical companies harbor deep doubts […]By: William Van Ornum, Ph.D.
April is World Autism Awareness Month, with Autism Awareness Day annually on April 2. What is Autism Spectrum? It is not easily defined, even by professionals. Modalities of treatment likewise vary and are in their infancy—even as strides are made. AMHF calls our readers’ attention to this often-misunderstood and easily misidentified diagnosis. Asperger’s syndrome (or […]By: Evander Lomke
President Barack Obama made headlines with his proposal to encourage American scientists to work toward understanding the great mysteries of the brain. Done as a massive project, this could rival past collective enterprises such as Getting a Man to the Moon; when President Kennedy suggested this, it took everyone’s breath away. It looked unattainable in […]By: William Van Ornum, Ph.D.
In part 1 of this essay we examined the nature of psychological trauma, an individual’s physical and psychological response to sudden, usually unexpected, potentially life-threatening events, and the emergence of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) thirty-one days later. We reviewed the disruptions that may occur in the domains of good physical and mental health (reasonable mastery, […]By: Dr. Raymond B. Flannery Jr.
Several months ago the Cuomo administration announced that budgets for nonprofit agencies serving the developmentally disabled would be cut. This had led to an outcry from parents, community members, and those who work at these agencies. Recently it was announced that the cuts would be changed. Although this is helpful, it still leaves most organizations […]By: William Van Ornum, Ph.D.
Do you find the concept of a dreaming phrenologist at all funny? I didn’t think so. Once upon a time, psychoanalysis was viewed as nothing but a shabby cousin of phrenology. Freud and his followers changed all this, even though the tired gags of the usually brilliant Woody Allen might leave one to believe otherwise. […]By: Evander Lomke
It is not inappropriate for an organization of American Mental Health Foundation—which serves persons of many nationalities and beliefs—to offer our best wishes for the Catholic Church’s new pontiff, Francis I. Sponsorship of mental health programs has been an important role of the Catholic Church in the USA. Many Catholic hospitals have included psychiatric units, […]By: William Van Ornum, Ph.D.
The Mid-Hudson Valley in New York State may be atypical from many other localities: it has the highest proportion of developmentally disabled persons in the country. Over 10,000 developmentally disabled residents from Willowbrook, Letchworth Village, and Wassaic Developmental Center have been re-integrated into the community. A large number of jobs—private and nonprofit—are part of the […]By: William Van Ornum, Ph.D.
Do you know what acrophobia is? The 1950s, like the 1940s, was a rich era for Hollywood depictions of “psychological problems” and themes—especially around words, terms, and concepts not generally known to audiences as such are today: in part, though we often do not realize it, thanks to the very movies we are putting “on […]By: Evander Lomke