- File Size: 4483 KB
- Print Length: 298 pages
- Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0692168427
- Publisher: Lynn Nanos (November 21, 2018)
- Publication Date: November 21, 2018
- Sold by: Amazon.com Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B07KS1HDHY
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Not Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #678,868 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Breakdown: A Clinician's Experience in a Broken System of Emergency Psychiatry Kindle Edition
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Lynn Nanos provides a gritty and extremely candid look at our dysfunctional mental health care system. Her extensive experience in this trying environment provides a view of that world that few ever see. If you've ever wondered "Why don't we do more for the mentally ill?" read this book and you'll understand.--Chief Mark K. Leahy (retired), Executive Director, Massachusetts Chiefs of Police Association
In Breakdown, Lynn Nanos draws upon years of clinical experience to expose one of our society's most shameful injustices: the neglect of individuals with serious mental illness. By weaving together her own first-person account with historical, political, and legal background, Nanos issues a clarion call for the construction of adequate mental health services for our most vulnerable citizens.--Dominic Sisti, Ph.D., Director, Scattergood Program for Applied Ethics of Behavioral Health Care, Department of Medical Ethics and Health Policy, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania; Assistant Professor of Medical Ethics and Health Policy, Philosophy, Psychiatry, University of Pennsylvania
Lynn Nanos' book Breakdown is a welcome addition to those that seek to educate the public about America's mental health crisis - one that too many willfully neglect. She offers a valuable perspective from the front lines of a broken treatment system, where psychiatrists and social workers are overwhelmed by people for whom fewer and fewer inpatient treatment beds are available. Many do not even know they are sick and, after being released to the streets, will wind up behind bars. Nanos sees clearly the consequences of failing to treat the most severely ill among us, and she understands why systemic reform is so badly needed, particularly in her state of Massachusetts - one of just three states without an assisted outpatient treatment program - where there is little to prevent the most severely ill from cycling through our emergency rooms, homeless shelters, and jails. "One tragedy should be enough to sound alarms," Nanos writes. Indeed. Yet, human tragedies continue to befall people with serious mental illness and their families at a record clip. I hope that this book will open eyes, ears, and hearts to their suffering, motivating action.--John Snook, J.D., Executive Director, Treatment Advocacy Center
Breakdown: A Clinician's Experience in a Broken System of Emergency Psychiatry is yet another excellent example of our badly broken mental illness treatment system. The author, Lynn Nanos, is a psychiatric social worker within the Massachusetts state system which is one of the worst states. She clearly describes the failures of the system and consequent tragedies for the patients. I recommend her well-written book.--E. Fuller Torrey, M.D., Founder, Treatment Advocacy Center; Associate Director of Research, Stanley Medical Research Institute; Author, American Psychosis: How the Federal Government Destroyed the Mental Illness Treatment System; Author, The Insanity Offense: How America's Failure to Treat the Seriously Mentally Ill Endangers Its Citizens
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The book is well written, heart-wrenching in many of the real patient stories. I could well imagine the author going home each night, still worrying about the safety and continuum of care (or lack of it) for those she evaluated each day. And in the current times we live in, with such a severe shortage of hospital beds in psychiatric wings, I was shocked to learn from her research that up to 12% of those admitted for emergency psychiatric care are what the mental health care industry calls “malingerers.”
These are folks who don’t fit the criteria for gravely ill when they are evaluated, but they work the system so they can gain admission and have a nice all-expenses paid mini-vacation in a hospital. This is also at the expense of so many desperate people who really do need the care, but there are no beds available for them. My own family member once spent five days in the E.R. at USC Medical Center, waiting for placement and continuing to deteriorate each passing day.
Even more frustrating was the author’s confirmation from her own documentation, the frequency with which the hospitals discharge psychiatric patients before they are stable. This is just one of many ways in which the broken mental health care system actually encourages relapse and sabotages recovery for the most seriously mentally ill.
On the up side, it was very comforting to know that there are such dedicated professionals like Ms. Nanos, working on behalf of those with little-to-no capacity to help themselves. An underlying theme in Breakdown also addresses the touchy issue of involuntary treatment. We live in a nation where many people maintain the myopic view point that a person has the right to be as psychotic as they want to be (until they harm someone.) Both inside and outside the mental health care industry, there are very powerful and vocal opponents of involuntary treatment because they claim that a person’s rights would be violated.
The case studies and research done for Breakdown make it very clear that we need to intervene for those who don’t have the capacity to make rational, safe choices for themselves. A temporary suspension of personal “freedoms” may just save a life, or many lives, and actually provide enough treatment for a person to gain some insight and eventually experience a higher quality of life.
A copy of Nanos’ book should be read by every mental health policy maker in the country. I recommend Breakdown to anyone who wants to understand more of the process and circumstances under which a seriously mentally ill person gets hospitalized, including those who are homeless or without family members to help them.
THANK YOU LYNN NANOS!!! She bravely shares the realities our loved ones with serious mental illness suffer. They have been ignored and allowed to languish in their illnesses for decades. Major changes need to happen NOW!
It is a great idea to share Breakdown with all your law and policy makers, law enforcement and advocates working to assist the seriously mentally ill.