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“Take This: Where Gaming Meets Mental Health”

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This June 10, 2016 by Chloi Rad on the IGN website, talks about efforts being made to raise awareness of mental health issues to gamers.  One effort includes working on providing an “AFK Room” (for the non-gamers AFK means “Away From Keyboard” and is often used by gamers when they need to step away from their console or computer briefly or to explain a lack of response to someone who didn’t know they wandered away from their computer or console)  In the case of the AFK Rooms, the article indicates that they are meant to be a quiet place staffed by clinicians where attendees at some of the gaming conferences can step away from the noise and chaos they are experiencing.  These rooms have been known to help people who were suicidal, as well as those who are having anxiety issues.   Take This wants to remind gamers that they are not exempt from ever being in need of mental health support, and want to decrease the stigma among gamers towards those who do need support.

I think I would sum this up as simply saying it is an example of gamers helping gamers since the AFK rooms were created by a well-known game company.

“Hawaii looks to allow psychologists to prescribe drugs”

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This April 28, 2016 AP article found on the Herald-Standard website talks about Hawaii’s interest in having Psychologists be able to prescribe medications to their clients.  This is something already done in the military, and in a few other states. It is hoped that this change could improve access to care, and maybe also help Hawaii decrease their suicide rate which according to the article is higher than the rate that people die from car accidents in Hawaii.

“Stretching psychiatric care in rural Pennsylvania”

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This February 25, 2016 article on the News works website talks about the immense struggle that rural areas face when trying to meet the demand for mental health services, particularly access to Psychiatrists, in Pennsylvania.  The article estimates that there are about 10 Psychiatrists for every 100,000 people in Pennsylvania and points out that many of the existing Psychiatrists seem to cluster around the larger cities leaving folks in rural areas where the need tends to be greater with fewer

English: This photo describes a rural area

English: This photo describes a rural area (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

professionals to serve those with mental health issues.

“Gov. Tom Wolf, state leaders launch new look at Pennsylvania’s criminal justice policies”

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This February 18, 2016 article by Charles Thompson, found on the Pennlive website, talks about the decision by Governor Tom Wolf and other lawmakers to look at ways to improve the Pennsylvania corrections system and maybe work towards decreasing the number of inmates so it is more inline with the average seen in the northeastern states region.  PA averages 3.94 sentenced inmates out of every 1000 people, where the entire Northeastern states region overall averages 2.26 per 1000 people.

“More than 1 million in US face food stamps cutoff”

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This February 2, 2016 article on the World Socialist Web Site (wsws.org) talks about an impending cut to food stamps that will affect millions of low-income people in the United States unless Congress does something to stop it.

 

“A Psychiatrist Opposes H.R. 2646: Here’s Why”

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This December 7, 2015 letter to Congressman Upton from Coni Kalinowski, MD
Medical Director, Mojave Adult, Child, and Family Services
University of Nevada School of Medicine, talks about why she opposes H.R. 2646 from the perspective of a Psychiatrist.

“Federal suit says state provides inadequate mental health care”

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This December 1, 2015 article by Joe Smydo of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette talks about a federal lawsuit being filed by the Disability Rights Network against the Pennsylvania Dept. of Human Services citing inadequate mental health care as the reason for the suit.  Warren State Hospital, Torrance State Hospital and Mifflin County Jail are where the 3 people the suit focuses on are located.

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