Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Bipolar Wellness Priorities (11-15)

This is the third installment of where I would concentrate my energies and funds if I ran a Bipolar Wellness organization. If you have other ideas, suggestions or comments, I'd love to hear them.

11. Stigma. Obviously, it is a terrible stigma for people to be labeled “mentally ill” and this stigmatization precludes many people from seeking help. Let’s stop talking about the importance of destigmatizing this illness and reclassify it as a behavioral or neurological illness.

12. Suicide. Although we know that the majority of suicides committed in the United States each year are due to depression, we need to know why. We also need to know why bipolar depressives kill themselves in disproportionate numbers. Survivors and family members of suicide victims should be interviewed. The purpose would be to determine what treatment options and support services would reduce the rate of suicide.

13. Computerized Programs to Assist Treatment. All BIPS should have access to computerized moods charts so they can keep records of their moods, medications, and symptoms. Their doctors should keep computerized records of medication. We should research what computer-aided programs would aid treatment.

14. Full disclosure. There should be a law passed, which requires that all relationships between pharmaceutical companies and whomever they are funding—including psychiatrists, medical centers, medical professional associations, and consumer groups—must be fully disclosed.

15. Exceptional BIPS. There should be an international search to identify exceptional BIPS. A team of researchers should be sent to interview them to determine what treatment options they're utilizing and what ideas they have for achieving Bipolar Wellness for others. These interviews should be videotaped and shared on the Internet.

3 comments:

JayPeeFreely said...

A veritable list of real world ideas...

Not to say he was specifically ill, but Heath Ledger strikes me as an unusual case from what the media hasn't reported...

At 27, I can recall how sometimes the pressures of it all can get to you. (That time frame, 27-29, seems to trigger something in people.)

Syd said...

Susan,

This is wonderful work. It's obvious that you've spent a lot of time and thought on these issues. There's got to be someplace to send this to as a logical next step, but I don't know who/where that would be. Perhaps someone reading this has some ideas on how to move forward in making this wonderful platform of wellness care a reality.

JayPeeFreely said...

Nullify the comments on Heath.

Syd has the spirit all right. (Sorry Billy Joel.)