“Mentally ill on hold without treatment: Norristown State Hospital lacks rooms for defendants deemed incompetent for trial”

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This July 15, 2016 article by Kaitlyn Foti found on the Mainline Media News website talks about the extremely long waiting list for beds at Torrance State Hospital and Norristown State Hospital Forensic Units.  The article talks about the impact not only to the person who is on the waiting list, but also their family, the flow of inmates through jails, and the financial impact faced by having to hold someone in jail who is on a waiting list for treatment.

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“Philly mental health community reflects on Byberry state hospital closure 25 years later “

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This June 22, 2015 article on the NewsWorks website talks about the need to commemorate the people who suffered at Philadelphia State Hospital or “Byberry” as it is often called.  The article also points out that people with mental health issues generally do better when they can receive services in the community instead of being placed in a large institution.  The article also indicates that by nature, large institutions sacrifice the humanity of the people placed there in exchange for efficiency of the work.

“Asylum for the severely mentally ill”

High Royds solitary confinement - geograph.org...

High Royds solitary confinement – geograph.org.uk – 1047059 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Asylum for the severely mentally ill.

This undated audio segment found on the WHYY – Voices In The Family, talks about the issues surrounding the treatment of people with mental illnesses describing how state hospitals have been run in the past, the closure of many of them, and the result of poor funding of community based services which has resulted in an influx of people with mental illnesses ending up in jails and prisons where they are often heavily medicated or placed in solitary confinement for long periods of time.   There is a link within the description of the segment pointing to an article on the Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA) “Improving Long-term Psychiatric Care Bring Back the Asylum” is a freely accessible publication and is the article that the interview in this segment is based on.

“As state mental institutions close, the final resting places for many patients are forgotten”

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This July 17, 2014 Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article talks about what is happening to the cemeteries that were once part of now closed state hospitals where the remains of patients who lived and died at the hospital were laid to rest.

The Fairfield State Hospital is a huge place t...

The Fairfield State Hospital is a huge place that was built 1933 to house the insane patients overflowing from two other state hospitals in Connecticut. The place is as big as a Ive League School. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Patient drop at Clarks Summit triggers hearing”

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This March 3, 2014 The Times-Tribune article talks about a decision to decrease the number of beds at Clark’s Summit State Hospital by 15 beds, due to a decrease in census at the state hospital which has been the result of the increase in community based services for those with mental illnesses.

Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania

Clarks Summit, Pennsylvania (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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“New standards of care implemented for mentally ill at Retreat State Hospital”

Main Entrance of Warren State Hospital in North Warren, PA

Main Entrance of Warren State Hospital in North Warren, PA

 

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This January 6, 2013 article on the citizenvoice.com website talks about the history of some of the state hospitals in Pennsylvania.  The focus is on facilities in Philly and Harrisburg, but other Pennsylvania facilities are mentioned as well.

Donated Christmas greens save hospital’s holiday

Donated Christmas greens save hospital’s holiday.

This is a neat article about the community response to the loss of Christmas decorations at Wernersville State Hospital due to the flooding from Tropical storm Lee that prompted the evacuation of the residents and staff at Wernersville State Hospital last September.

I would like to thank those who helped Wernersville State Hospital brighten things up for the residents there, but also would like to thank the countless people across Pennsylvania who selflessly donate their time and energy to help folks who happen to be less fortunate then them.  Many do this and will sacrifice time they could be spending with their own families so that they can help others.   Hats off to the many volunteers across Pennsylvania, you have my respect.

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