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A Lot of Thought, Little Action: Proposals About Mental Health Go Unheeded

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A recent report detailing problems with Florida’s patchwork mental health system had reached conclusions nearly identical to those of a similar report from more than 20 years ago. The echoes between the findings are unmistakable. And Florida isn’t the only state struggling with the criminalization of mental illness, a lack of coordination between providers, and insufficient access to treatment.

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Senators Have Mental Health Crises, Too

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When U.S. Sen. John Fetterman of Pennsylvania checked himself into the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center for treatment of depression this month, he got an unusual reaction from his colleagues in Congress: compassion. It’s a far cry from how politicians once kept their mental health issues under wraps at all costs. Meanwhile, GOP presidential candidate Nikki Haley is stirring up controversy by proposing that all politicians over age 75 be required to pass a mental competency test to hold office. Joanne Kenen of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Politico, Sarah Karlin-Smith of the Pink Sheet, and Rachel Roubein of The Washington Post join KHN chief Washington correspondent Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and more. Plus, for “extra credit,” the panelists suggest health policy stories they read this week that they think you should read, too.

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The Kids Are Not OK

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A new survey from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention finds that teenagers, particularly girls, are reporting all-time high rates of violence and profound mental distress. Meanwhile, both sides in the abortion debate are anxiously waiting for a district court decision in Texas that could effectively revoke the FDA’s 22-year-old approval of the abortion pill mifepristone. Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico, Sandhya Raman of CQ Roll Call, and Joanne Kenen of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Politico join KHN’s chief Washington correspondent, Julie Rovner, to discuss these issues and more.