Friday I shadowed another Mental Health Association (MHA) of Orange County Hearing Advocate at two different hospital psych wards, one in Orange and the other in Santa Ana. Neither hospital was as nice as the one in Laguna Beach; though, one was definitely nicer than the other. The patients, too, were quite different. Suffice it to say that though I’m aware of the problem of homelessness of many people with severe mental illness, I received a crash refresher course, and it was sobering. It is tragic that so many people live in a chronic cycle of short-term involuntary hospitalizations and homelessness.
I plan to research more about mental health patients’ rights in California. Here are some online resources that I found listed on the Resources page of the California Association of Mental Health Patients’ Rights Advocates ~ CAMHPRA.org:
California Patients’ Rights Resources
- California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform ~ CANHR.org
- California Association of Mental Health Patients’ Rights Advocates ~ CAMHPRA.org
- California Association of Mental Health Peer Run Organizations ~ CAMHPRO.org
- California Coalition on Mental Health ~ CaliforniaMentalHealth.org
- Disability Rights California ~ DisabilityRightsCA.org
- Prison Law Office ~ http://www.prisonlaw.com
California Government Links
- California Department of State Hospitals ~ DSH.ca.gov
- California Department of Social Services ~ CDSS.ca.gov/cdssweb/
- State of California Office of the Patient Advocate ~ OPA.ca.gov
- California Mental Health Services Authority ~ CalMHSA.org
Sorry, Sherr. I’m do not know. Have you tried googling it?
Practical piece – I learned a lot from the points – Does anyone know where I could possibly find a sample VA 21-2008 copy to fill out ?
At a recent course on consumer advocacy it was interesting the learn that mental health acts are written to override the United Nation’s Bill of Human Rights.
Thank you. Up late. Had coffee too late in day. Must take second clonazepam.
There you go! Just don’t bite that tongue because if you do it will look like something out of the “Texas Chainsaw Massacre”! 😉
My comment still stands. It takes courage.
Thanks, Dyane. Take care. I’ll try to hold my tongue during training and just drink it in and ask questions when appropriate.
You are just starting out – please cut yourself some slack! The trainees need to realize that their job is just that: to train – and they ain’t training no robot. So maybe you spoke a little more than you “should” have, but you have a powerful brain on those shoulders chomping at the bit to preach and to help. From now on perhaps heed their wishes 😉 so you can do what I believe you are meant to do. You already know all this…For the record I always want to know what you think. It may not be pretty (and it may include constructive criticism) but I’d much rather hear your opinion than receive superficial platitudes. Give me a Kitt brain over a banana slug brain any day! Do banana slugs even have brains? My brain hurts right now. p.s. I’ve been sick for the past 24 hours due to a yucky cold (I can’t take traditional OTC meds because of my MAOI, which is a bummer but that’s just how it is) and I didn’t sleep well last night despite doubling on the Seroquel, so forgive me for this ramble. I’m not spending as much time on the net, at least – I even watched a hilarious Jay Mohr comedy special that had me laughing so hard that I cried. That felt good….and healing. Well, until my damn sinuses clogged up again!
I’m just observing, or at least I’m supposed to just observe and keep quiet. The two MHA Hearing Advocates who have trained me had to repeatedly tell me to shut up. I’ve got a really big mouth. Not literally, but I do like to put my two cents in, as well as encourage. I have a reputation in my family (of origin) for preaching (remember, I even attended seminary). I tend to annoy people, especially family members. Not everyone wants to know what I think. It’s not appropriate as a trainee.
Thank you, but I’ve only just begun my training. For all I know, MHA can’t stand me. I have a really hard time just observing and keeping my mouth shut. I’m kind of a cheerleader of sorts (not literally, in any way, shape or form). Perhaps I’m more of a coach.
Oh, how I wish I had you at my side as a mental health advocate when I was in the hospital. I am incredibly proud of your commitment to helping others, and you continue to amaze me!
Admiration for your energy and work!! It is so important, what you are doing. Bless you, Ellen
I am so sorry that you had to experience homelessness. No one should be homeless in this country, in the world, for that matter. You are blessed to have your loving partner and a home now. You deserve it, as does everyone. All humans have value, deserve love, and are due basic human rights.
I do believe that it is somewhat a revolving door in CA, as well, but at least they attempt to secure after-care or at least formulate a plan with the patient.
Thank you for providing the list, Kitt. I wish I had known about some of them when I was homeless and practically….no, literally begging LA County clinics to please help me.
Great resources, Kitt. It’s been my experience that CA has stronger human rights plus disability inclusion for mental health than any state in our nation. Often the VA has a revolving door with their homeless population. A veteran will check into the VA to detox and then return to the streets. It’s a revolving door.
Thank you, Mihrank.
Kitt – They are important sources to everyone. Keep up with your mission and hard work. Everyone should receive this message. May God Bless you!