Sunday, March 02, 2008

Reforms may have hurt, rather than helped

Janella Williams died in restraints at Cherry Hospital. 'I just miss her, but I know there's nothing I can do to bring her back,' says her mother, Calvin Williams. Staff Photos by Juli Leonard
More than 80 patients at North Carolina's 14 mental institutions have died under questionable circumstances, Raleigh, N.C.'s News & Observer found as part of a five-part examination into the state's care of patients with mental illnesses. "The staffing and crowding conditions that may have contributed to the deaths are a consequence of reform," said Harold Carmel, president of the North Carolina Psychiatric Association. "Mental-health reform in North Carolina was a grandiose plan, with great-sounding rhetoric about how well things would go, but with little substance behind it." The News & Observer (Raleigh, N.C.)

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