News

'This is a pandemic of trauma. Everybody is feeling the pain.'

Elizabeth Cope, Mental Health Clinical Supervisor with the Home Outreach Team, conducts outreach and distributes information regarding COVID-19 during a resource fair at Lario Park, March 24, 2020. Photo by Los Angeles County via Flickr.

As COVID-19 cases surge in California, some of the state's leading mental health professionals warned of long-lasting psychological fallout that will require enormous investment to help Californians who are suffering. Yet they also praised innovative experiments during the pandemic and said there is reason for hope.

"This is a pandemic of trauma. Everybody is feeling the pain and suffering from stress and anxiety and depression across the board," said Dr. Jonathan Sherin, director of the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health, at "PolicyMatters: The Crisis in California Mental Health." The virtual panel Tuesday was sponsored by CalMatters and moderated by reporter Jocelyn Wiener.

'We know that unemployment rates have skyrocketed, compounding preexisting stress and all the other pressures making it hard to survive.'

- Dr. Rhea Boyd, UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital

"We're going to see upticks in suicide," Sherin said. "We're likely to see a large level of deterioration that we have to get in front of." Even before the pandemic and preceding recession, California already struggled with a mental health system widely considered to be dysfunctional. Most counties lack psychiatric beds for uninsured patients, particularly youth. Community behavioral health and addiction programs have faced budget cuts. While private insurers cover mental health treatment, it can be hard to obtain despite parity laws. And in some regions of the state, trained mental health workers are in short supply. More than 1.1 million California adults reported a serious mental illness in the previous year, according to a 2017 federal survey.

Gov. Gavin Newsom promised "an aggressive agenda to lift California's approach to mental health care into a national model." But some of that work was embedded in a massive planned revamp of the state's Medi-Cal program that has been put on hold amid the pandemic.

Panelists highlighted longstanding mental health concerns that have come to the forefront amid national protests over police brutality and systemic racism.

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"Families are facing a confluence of crises. Families of color and Black and indigenous people in particular are facing the threat of police brutality," said Dr. Rhea Boyd, a pediatrician practicing at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation and University of California San Francisco (UCSF) Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland. "We know that unemployment rates have skyrocketed, compounding preexisting stress and all the other pressures making it hard to survive."

Among the panel's other takeaways:

• Panelists said policymakers should ease the way for more services to be provided in new ways, including tele-therapy and mobile mental health vans serving the homeless and other hard-to-reach populations. "Let us in the trenches show you how we can help care for people more effectively – rather than in a top-down way that lets us know what we're permitted to do," Sherin said.

• Consider preventive mental health services before children, especially, are diagnosed and "pathologized." Boyd noted that state and federal policies require children to receive a potentially stigmatizing diagnosis before they can receive any type of help. "Child mental health in our state is an abomination," Boyd said. "We force kids into a medical model" that may not work for them, she said.

• California officials will continue working to hold private insurers accountable when they inappropriately deny mental health care to their members, said John Connolly, deputy secretary for behavioral health for the California Health and Human Services Agency. Amid many budget cuts, the state has kept money for the Department of Managed Health Care to investigate and sanction insurers for failing to provide mental health care required under federal and state parity laws.

• Attempts to house the homeless in hotels during the pandemic, including Project Roomkey, have not always been followed up by mental health and other services, said C.W. Johnson, outreach coordinator at the Mental Health Association of San Francisco. "They're just getting a safe place to stay. They may be safe from COVID-19 but not all the other risks they deal with. We're solving one problem but others aren't being addressed," including food and medical care in addition to mental health care, Johnson said. "We have to do outreach and we have to get out there. Until we get more innovative, people are going to suffer."

Watch the full conversation here:

In distress over COVID-19? There is help.

Anyone who is experiencing depression or heightened anxiety because of the public health crisis can find help through local resources:

In Santa Clara County:

• 24/7 Behavioral Health Services Department Call Center: 800-704-0900.

• Crisis Text Line: Text RENEW to 741741.

• 24/7 Suicide and Crisis Hotline: 855-278-4204.

• If you are experiencing an emergency, call 911 immediately.

In San Mateo County:

• Behavioral Health Services & Resources - 24/7

• Access Call Center - Toll-free number: 800-686-0101 | For the hearing impaired: 800-943-2833.

• If you are experiencing an emergency, call 911 immediately.

For seniors, people with disabilities: The Institute on Aging has a Friendship Line for people ages 60 and older and adults with disabilities who feel isolated: 800-971-0016.

For youth: A list of local resources for young people who need mental health support, as well as their family and friends, can be found here.

Email Barbara Feder Ostrov at [email protected].

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CALmatters.org is a nonprofit, nonpartisan media venture explaining California's policies and politics. Read more state news from CALmatters here.

Follow Mountain View Voice Online on Twitter @mvvoice, Facebook and on Instagram @mvvoice for breaking news, local events, photos, videos and more.

'This is a pandemic of trauma. Everybody is feeling the pain.'

by / CalMatters

Uploaded: Mon, Jul 27, 2020, 11:08 am

As COVID-19 cases surge in California, some of the state's leading mental health professionals warned of long-lasting psychological fallout that will require enormous investment to help Californians who are suffering. Yet they also praised innovative experiments during the pandemic and said there is reason for hope.

"This is a pandemic of trauma. Everybody is feeling the pain and suffering from stress and anxiety and depression across the board," said Dr. Jonathan Sherin, director of the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health, at "PolicyMatters: The Crisis in California Mental Health." The virtual panel Tuesday was sponsored by CalMatters and moderated by reporter Jocelyn Wiener.

"We're going to see upticks in suicide," Sherin said. "We're likely to see a large level of deterioration that we have to get in front of." Even before the pandemic and preceding recession, California already struggled with a mental health system widely considered to be dysfunctional. Most counties lack psychiatric beds for uninsured patients, particularly youth. Community behavioral health and addiction programs have faced budget cuts. While private insurers cover mental health treatment, it can be hard to obtain despite parity laws. And in some regions of the state, trained mental health workers are in short supply. More than 1.1 million California adults reported a serious mental illness in the previous year, according to a 2017 federal survey.

Gov. Gavin Newsom promised "an aggressive agenda to lift California's approach to mental health care into a national model." But some of that work was embedded in a massive planned revamp of the state's Medi-Cal program that has been put on hold amid the pandemic.

Panelists highlighted longstanding mental health concerns that have come to the forefront amid national protests over police brutality and systemic racism.

"Families are facing a confluence of crises. Families of color and Black and indigenous people in particular are facing the threat of police brutality," said Dr. Rhea Boyd, a pediatrician practicing at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation and University of California San Francisco (UCSF) Benioff Children's Hospital Oakland. "We know that unemployment rates have skyrocketed, compounding preexisting stress and all the other pressures making it hard to survive."

Among the panel's other takeaways:

• Panelists said policymakers should ease the way for more services to be provided in new ways, including tele-therapy and mobile mental health vans serving the homeless and other hard-to-reach populations. "Let us in the trenches show you how we can help care for people more effectively – rather than in a top-down way that lets us know what we're permitted to do," Sherin said.

• Consider preventive mental health services before children, especially, are diagnosed and "pathologized." Boyd noted that state and federal policies require children to receive a potentially stigmatizing diagnosis before they can receive any type of help. "Child mental health in our state is an abomination," Boyd said. "We force kids into a medical model" that may not work for them, she said.

• California officials will continue working to hold private insurers accountable when they inappropriately deny mental health care to their members, said John Connolly, deputy secretary for behavioral health for the California Health and Human Services Agency. Amid many budget cuts, the state has kept money for the Department of Managed Health Care to investigate and sanction insurers for failing to provide mental health care required under federal and state parity laws.

• Attempts to house the homeless in hotels during the pandemic, including Project Roomkey, have not always been followed up by mental health and other services, said C.W. Johnson, outreach coordinator at the Mental Health Association of San Francisco. "They're just getting a safe place to stay. They may be safe from COVID-19 but not all the other risks they deal with. We're solving one problem but others aren't being addressed," including food and medical care in addition to mental health care, Johnson said. "We have to do outreach and we have to get out there. Until we get more innovative, people are going to suffer."

Watch the full conversation here:

In distress over COVID-19? There is help.

Anyone who is experiencing depression or heightened anxiety because of the public health crisis can find help through local resources:

In Santa Clara County:

• 24/7 Behavioral Health Services Department Call Center: 800-704-0900.

• Crisis Text Line: Text RENEW to 741741.

• 24/7 Suicide and Crisis Hotline: 855-278-4204.

• If you are experiencing an emergency, call 911 immediately.

In San Mateo County:

• Behavioral Health Services & Resources - 24/7

• Access Call Center - Toll-free number: 800-686-0101 | For the hearing impaired: 800-943-2833.

• If you are experiencing an emergency, call 911 immediately.

For seniors, people with disabilities: The Institute on Aging has a Friendship Line for people ages 60 and older and adults with disabilities who feel isolated: 800-971-0016.

For youth: A list of local resources for young people who need mental health support, as well as their family and friends, can be found here.

Email Barbara Feder Ostrov at [email protected].

CALmatters.org is a nonprofit, nonpartisan media venture explaining California's policies and politics.

Comments

carmen
Cuesta Park
on Jul 27, 2020 at 4:30 pm
carmen , Cuesta Park
on Jul 27, 2020 at 4:30 pm
3 people like this

Wow! Mr. Newsom after unnecessarily locking up business and schools, leading our state to catastrophic economic disaster and greatly damaged education of our children, now says that he is going to undertake "an aggressive agenda to lift California's approach to mental health care into a national model."
Congratulations Mr. Newsom. What else can you do for California? You seem to be pursuing "National Models." Of what? Of careless and mindless decisions?


Carmelita
Cuesta Park
on Jul 27, 2020 at 7:13 pm
Carmelita, Cuesta Park
on Jul 27, 2020 at 7:13 pm
6 people like this

Yo, carm: 150,000 dead Americans.

What's your solution? Let the virus run wild? What national leader do you think is doing better?


The Business Man
Old Mountain View
on Jul 27, 2020 at 7:30 pm
The Business Man, Old Mountain View
on Jul 27, 2020 at 7:30 pm
2 people like this

There are some people that think that all that matters is their wallets.

In their minds, so what if people are disabled or killed, as long as it is not them or their friends and family, it simply doesn't matter.

Given that we were controlling COVID, ten all of the controls were relaxed to preserve ECONOMICS, then the cases started going crazy.

And now it looks like the NFL is getting closer to shutting down for the season.

I want businesses open as soon as it is reasonable, but right now, it isn't even close. We should have been told by the President and all other governments that COVID was that everything had to be put on an indefinite hold. But the politicians and the business interests cannot swallow this reality.


Cody is cruel
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Jul 29, 2020 at 11:28 am
Cody is cruel, Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Jul 29, 2020 at 11:28 am
4 people like this

To rich people like the business man being able to feed their families or pay the rent is not an issue. Can’t put everything on indefinite hold. Not feasible or realistic.

NFL season has not even started.

Stay in your large air conditioned mansion and let others try to live their lives.


The Business Man
Old Mountain View
on Jul 29, 2020 at 11:44 am
The Business Man, Old Mountain View
on Jul 29, 2020 at 11:44 am
2 people like this

In response to Cody is cruel you said:

“To rich people like the business man being able to feed their families or pay the rent is not an issue. Can’t put everything on indefinite hold. Not feasible or realistic.”

I lost my job due to COVID, and now I cannot pay my rent because of the loss of the unemployment insurance enhancement. I live in an apartment with no air conditioning, only one gas heater, and a 650 sq foot single bedroom apartment. So nice try to claim I am not also under critical conditions. The reality is EVERYONE is suffering So when you said:

“Stay in your large air conditioned mansion and let others try to live their lives.”

Reality is proving this statement wrong. And you want others to in effect risk permanent disability and death without any good cause. The Public Health system cannot allow the public to take extra risks on their health. You’re just frustrated like me because COVID is tearing everything apart. But denial of the risks of public health is not an option. And our president’s irrational actions of inconsistency saying one thing one day, and then negating it the next isn’t helping.

The Medical community just has to say this in order for the people to be best informed, “I DON’T KNOW” when we can get the COVID crisis under control. Because they DON’T KNOW. And the politicians have to GET THEIR HEAD OUT OF THE SAND and establish a LIFE SUPPORT plan to keep people alive and safe in their homes until COVID is under control.

Without that, the economy is going to be continually damaged worse and worse and never recover.


He got it wrong
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Jul 29, 2020 at 12:27 pm
He got it wrong, Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Jul 29, 2020 at 12:27 pm
5 people like this

“ I lost my job due to COVID, and now I cannot pay my rent because of the loss of the unemployment insurance enhancement. I live in an apartment with no air conditioning, only one gas heater, and a 650 sq foot single bedroom apartment. So nice try to claim I am not also under critical conditions. The reality is EVERYONE is suffering So when you said:”

Shame on you TBM. I recall on previous threads you bragging about your education and saying you were working as a government IT person. You told us how you were going to trigger forensic audits of restaurants in the area to make them shut down because you were against restauarants making money, yiu ranted and raved about alcohol being served at Castro street restaurants. Need I go on?

And now you are claiming that you lost your job and have been out of work for months, shame on you trying to hijack the misery and pain of others for your selfish needs.

How sad.


Gohmert Pile
Whisman Station
on Jul 29, 2020 at 12:31 pm
Gohmert Pile, Whisman Station
on Jul 29, 2020 at 12:31 pm
4 people like this

Congressman Louie Gohmert, age 66. (R-Texas) has tested positive for the cornoavirus today preliminary to his plan to travel on a jet with President Trump. Gohmert said he wonders if he got the virus BY WEARING A MASK. In reality, Gohmert seldom wore a mask, and masks do not spread the virus (unless you borrow a used mask from a virus victim). Gohmert yesterday had spoken directly and close-up with Attorney General William Barr - neither one wearing a mask - in connection with Barr's appearance in a televised Judiciary Committee hearing in the House. The important thing now is that Gohmert see a doctor in Texas who knows what to do: Doctor-Pastor Stella Immanuel of Houston. Good luck Gohmert. You may need it.


The Business Man
Old Mountain View
on Jul 29, 2020 at 2:08 pm
The Business Man, Old Mountain View
on Jul 29, 2020 at 2:08 pm
Like this comment

In response to He got it wrong you said:

“Shame on you TBM. I recall on previous threads you bragging about your education and saying you were working as a government IT person. You told us how you were going to trigger forensic audits of restaurants in the area to make them shut down because you were against restaurants making money, yiu ranted and raved about alcohol being served at Castro street restaurants. Need I go on?

And now you are claiming that you lost your job and have been out of work for months, shame on you trying to hijack the misery and pain of others for your selfish needs.”

Your attempts to personally attack me are getting humorous. I just stated REALITY.

The fact is I lost my work because of COVID.

My employer wanted me to relocate to Hawaii, but COVID shut down the country. My relocation process was getting started when the declaration of medical emergency was issued by DONALD TRUMP. My government contractor shut down my onboarding when that happened. So YES I am part of the 14.9% of workers in California out of work because of COVID.

Remember you do not get unemployment insurance if you are responsible for the loss of work. That means I lost work by no fault of my own and you know it. The REALITY is that whenever I try to direct attention to the real problems, you come around to try to distract the readers. Sorry, that isn’t going to work.

DONALD TRUMP doesn’t have a clue what to do and is losing his ability to even keep track of his own actions. He THINKS that every day clears all other actions from the day before, and in some cases as little as a few hours.

The reality is that people like DONALD TRUMP argue that as long as people BEHAVE they will get what they need. THAT is a bold lie. This is the quote I think of regarding this claim:

“Jareth : Sarah, beware. I HAVE BEEN GENEROUS UP 'TIL NOW. I CAN BE CRUEL.

Sarah : Generous? What have you done THAT'S GENEROUS?

Jareth : *EVERYTHING*! Everything that you wanted I have done. You asked that the child be taken. I took him. YOU COWERED BEFORE ME, I WAS FRIGHTENING. I have reordered time. I have turned the world upside down, and I have done it all for *you*! I am exhausted from living up to your expectations. Isn't that generous?

Sarah : Through dangers untold. And hardships unnumbered. I have fought my way here to the castle; beyond the goblin city, to take back the child that you have stolen. MY WILL IS AS STRONG AS YOURS, AND MY KINGDOM AS GREAT...

Jareth : Stop! Look what I'm offering you. YOUR DREAMS.

Sarah : My kingdom as great... my kingdom as great... DAMN, I CAN NEVER REMEMBER THAT LINE.

Jareth : I ask for so little. JUST FEAR ME. LOVE ME. DO AS I ASK, AND I SHALL BE YOUR SLAVE.

Sarah : You have NO POWER OVER ME!”( Web Link)

Please watch this video (Web Link)

This is the mentality we are dealing with. And you are part of this group.

YOU HAVE NO POWER OVER US, THE VIRUS, AND THE PERMANENT ECONOMIC DAMAGE.


He got it wrong
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Jul 29, 2020 at 2:46 pm
He got it wrong, Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Jul 29, 2020 at 2:46 pm
4 people like this

“ My employer wanted me to relocate to Hawaii, but COVID shut down the country. My relocation process was getting started when the declaration of medical emergency was issued by DONALD TRUMP. My government contractor shut down my onboarding when that happened. So YES I am part of the 14.9% of workers in California out of work because of COVID. “

Of course, TBM. Nice try. Sounds quite different from what yiu were saying a couple,of weeks ago. But I guess when you are desperate any kind of fairy tale will do..... ( LOL. On boarding to Hawaii!!!!)

And then the long long deflection about trump. Priceless.


The Business Man
Old Mountain View
on Jul 29, 2020 at 4:46 pm
The Business Man, Old Mountain View
on Jul 29, 2020 at 4:46 pm
Like this comment

He Got It Wrong:

You Got It Wrong, I said my PROFESSION was in IT Security and my work experience was in the various positions. You need to learn how to read AND remember.

In any case, you’re still not addressing the PROBLEM.

You remind me of the Michael Crichton Book DISCLOSURE, when the protagonist was being distracted by a sexual harassment settlements setting him up to lose his job because of "incompetence". But he was protected by "A Friend" and was told about people sabotaging his project production line behind his back. Here is the Wikipedia link (Web Link).

I can figure you’re of the same stuff. You will try any trick you can to put down anyone that doesn’t agree with you.

In any case, the PROBLEM is COVID, the rest is just the impact of it.

AND YOU KNOW IT.


He got it wrong
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Jul 29, 2020 at 6:17 pm
He got it wrong, Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Jul 29, 2020 at 6:17 pm
2 people like this

"You Got It Wrong, I said my PROFESSION was in IT Security and my work experience was in the various positions."

Here you claim to be trained in HR:

"As one trained in Human Resources, this appears to be an attempt to prevent statistical analysis that could indicate disparate impact in employment at Google.'
Web Link


It seems that you choose your profession based on what will make it seem like you know what you are talking about.

Now we are deflecting with a Michael Crichton book

IT security, chemist, HR, lab worker, triggerer of forensic audits... so talented.

Yet sinks so low to claim that he lost a job that he was tlaking he had just a few weeks back to prove a point. Sad.


The Business Man
Old Mountain View
on Jul 29, 2020 at 7:40 pm
The Business Man, Old Mountain View
on Jul 29, 2020 at 7:40 pm
Like this comment

He Got It Wrong.

I have TWO Business Degrees, so YES.

The first one is in Management Information Systems.

The second is in Human Resources Management.

Both from the Lucas College of Business at San Jose State University.

You aren't keeping up with my posts.

Again when are you going to talk about how we are going to deal with COVID?

Instead of trying to put anyone down, your not contributing.


Gohmert Pile
Whisman Station
on Jul 29, 2020 at 7:47 pm
Gohmert Pile, Whisman Station
on Jul 29, 2020 at 7:47 pm
2 people like this

You two knock it off. "Gohmert Pile" is darn funny and far more important than your feud. The Business Man should just start a business needed during the pandemic. Or figure out how to help swing a swing state against Donald Trump. Join a campaign. Do something. The pandemic is not going away before Trump is out of office.


The Business Man
Old Mountain View
on Jul 29, 2020 at 8:02 pm
The Business Man, Old Mountain View
on Jul 29, 2020 at 8:02 pm
Like this comment

Oh I forgot to mention.

While at SJSU I TAUGHT A MASTERS DEGREE PROGRAM CLASS with supervision of a PhD full professor the class was "Managing Diversity in Human Resources"

I did this as an undergraduate, the Professor simply supervised me, at no time did he have to correct me.

The Course was to train MBA's to avoid violating Affirmative Action Plans or Federal Contract Compliance Requirements involving either inadvertent or intentional discrimination.

I had to educate them on data analysis, and records compliance.

So again, do not underestimate who you are discussing these matters.


He got it wrong
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Jul 29, 2020 at 8:07 pm
He got it wrong, Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Jul 29, 2020 at 8:07 pm
2 people like this

LOL. TBM. I have looked at your postings from years back. It is clear that as the need suits you you become an expert in this or that with degrees in this or that. You actually sound just like donald trump!!!


The Business Man
Old Mountain View
on Jul 29, 2020 at 10:22 pm
The Business Man, Old Mountain View
on Jul 29, 2020 at 10:22 pm
Like this comment

In response to He got it wrong you said:

“LOL. TBM. I have looked at your postings from years back. It is clear that as the need suits you you become an expert in this or that with degrees in this or that. You actually sound just like donald trump!!!”

Please instead of constantly trying to personally attack those that disagree with you can you do this:

Please provide us with an effective medicine that prevents disability or death regarding COVID? So far we do not have one that addresses the disease, only the theoretical symptoms of it. Until we have one we can’t go “back to normal” and you know it.

Please provide us with an effective vaccine that immunizes us against COVID? So far we don’t have one yet. Until we have one we can’t go “back to normal” and you know it.

Please provide us with a means to prevent the spread of COVID? So far we have in effect no controls other the Shelter In Place, Social Distancing, Social Contact Prevention, and the like. Unless ALL of us are safe from being infected by others we cannot go “back to normal” and you know it.

And before you ask me the same questions, I am honest to say I have no answers. What is frustrating is that the medical community is spreading false hopes because they really do not yet have any proof that they have this disease fully understood.

The only thing we have achieved is testing, that takes so long that Bill Gates calls the testing a waste of effort. The interview is found here “Bill Gates Says Majority of U.S. Coronavirus Testing Is a 'Complete Waste' Because It Takes Too Long “ (Web Link) The delays make it impossible to contact trace and infection control in any way.

Please say something other than, don’t listens to him because he is wrong? I am not right or wrong except that COVID is beating us.

Please say something other than, don’t listen to him because he is hurting local business? I am not damaging businesses the COVID virus is. You are trying to misdirect the root cause onto people instead of attacking the VIRUS.

I guess you want the VIRUS to win. I used to play a game where I was controlling a virus with the goal to kill all humans on Earth. I DON’T PLAY THAT GAME ANYMORE. The REALITY is terrifying me and again we do not have any proof of any improvement yet.

Time for you to stop your personal attacks and discuss something constructive?


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