Mental Health Inc: How Corruption, Lax Oversight, and Failed Reforms Endanger Our Most Vulnerable Citizens

Mental Health Inc: How Corruption, Lax Oversight, and Failed Reforms Endanger Our Most Vulnerable Citizens

by Art Levine


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Mental Health Inc: How Corruption, Lax Oversight, and Failed Reforms Endanger Our Most Vulnerable Citizens by Art Levine

The no-holds-barred and crucial call to action for America’s broken mental health system, by a prize-winning investigative journalistThe mental health system in America is hardly the front-burner issue it should be, despite lip service about reform after each new tragic mass killing. Yet every American should care deeply about fixing a system a presidential commission reported was in “shambles.” By some measures, 20 percent of Americans have some sort of mental health condition, including the most vulnerable among us—veterans, children, the elderly, prisoners, the homeless.With Mental Health, Inc., award-winning investigative journalist Art Levine delivers a Shock Doctrine-style exposé of the failures of our out of control, profit-driven mental health system, with a special emphasis on dangerous residential treatment facilities and the failures of the pharmaceutical industry, including the overdrugging of children with antipsychotics and the disastrous maltreatment of veterans with PTSD by the scandal-wracked VA.Levine provides compelling narrative portraits of victims who needlessly died and some mentally ill people who won unexpected victories in their lives by getting smart, personalized help from “pyschosocial” programs that incorporate safe and appropriate prescribing, along with therapy and social support. He contrasts their stories with corrupt Big Pharma executives and researchers who created fraudulent marketing schemes. Levine also tells the dramatic David vs. Goliath stories of a few brave reformers, including Harvard-trained psychiatrist and researcher Dr. Stefan Kruszewski, who has acted as a whistleblower in several major cases, leading to important federal and state settlements; in addition, the book spotlights pioneering clinicians challenging outmoded, drug-and-sedate practices that leave 90 percent of people with serious mental illness too disabled to work.By taking a comprehensive look at mental health abuses and dangerous, ineffective practices as well as pointing toward solutions for creating a system for effective, proven and compassionate care, Art Levine’s essential Mental Health, Inc. is a call to action for politicians and citizens alike—needed now more than ever.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781468308372
Publisher: The Overlook Press
Publication date: 08/15/2017
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 785,288
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 8.60(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Art Levine, a prize-winning contributing editor of The
Washington Monthly and a Nation
Institute Investigative Fund grantee, has written for The American Prospect, Salon,
The Atlantic, The Daily Beast, Mother Jones, Truthout, AlterNet and numerous other publications. Among other awards,
he was honored as “Journalist of the Year” by the Florida chapter of the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill in
2001 for his articles in City Link, a
Florida weekly, exploring the criminalization of the mentally ill in South
Florida. In 2005, as a Health Policy Fellow with the Progressive Policy
Institute, he wrote a prescient major report, Parity-Plus: A Third Way Approach toFixAmerica'sMental HealthSystem that looked at roadblocks to using effective treatments. Since then, he has exposed a wide range of corporate and government wrongdoing, in a series of articles for The American Prospect, The Washington Monthly and Salon, among others.

Table of Contents

Introduction 9

1 Drugging Our Kids: Corporate Greed Joins Corruption, Apathy 35

2 Nursing Homes: Drugging Our Seniors to Death 53

3 The Secret History of the VA's Tragedies in Tomah and Phoenix 69

4 The Secret History of the VA Scandals, Part II: The Empire Strikes Back 87

5 A Marine's Descent into PTSD Hell 113

6 Stan White and the Veterans' Search for Truth and Answers 138

7 Mr. White Comes to Washington: FDA Showdown over Seroquel 146

8 Drug-Free PTSD Recovery 161

9 How LA County's Mental Health Officials Neglect Inmates and Ignore Violence 170

10 To Live and Die in LA: How DMH's Outreach Work Saves Lives, Stops Mass Shootings 185

11 Torture in Alabama 199

12 Profits and Losses from Residential Treatment: The Story of Bain Capital and CRC Health 219

13 Recipe for Disaster?: Residential Treatment Programs for Addicts and Kids 233

14 Florida: Free-Fire Zone for Killing, Abusing and Raping Kids? 246

15 Karen's Story and the Mental Health System That Never Was: Saving Families, Young People from Lifelong Madness 257

16 Why Can't We Just Do What Works? 271

17 Putting People Before Big Pharma: Overcoming the Barriers to Recovery 284

Endnotes 299

Assistance, Advocacy and Information Resource Guide 347

Acknowledgments 350

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