Mental health issues that require medications can be a stumbling block for those coming out of prison. More often than not, a person coming out of prison will have a 30 day supply of medications. They will also have an appointment to a county mental health agency.
In talking to some who work at Meridian in Alachua, less than 30 percent of those coming out of prison show up for their appointment. Appointments are not always scheduled at easy times to make depending on your situation but they can be changed. The important thing is to make then as it is going to be harder and harder to get mental health needs met in emergency rooms.
As inconvienent as it may be to make that first appointment it is a foot in the door and that door could very well be the only door that is open and available to those coming out of prison with mental health issues. This is particularly true in Florida.
“..Despite being the fourth most populated state, Florida’s per capita funding for mental health services is ranked 49th in the nation. With Florida’s foreclosure and unemployment rates among the highest in the United States, many can’t afford treatment that would prevent problems before they reach a critical stage….”
For more, follow these links:
Emergency rooms can’t solve nation’s mental health crisis
Emergency room holds no mental-health solutions
You could say that where Florida was 49th in the lists of states providing funding for mental health issues, it is going to get a lot worse in the new budget year. “..The biggest-ever reduction in mental health and drug treatment funding passed by the Florida Senate this week will cost taxpayers even more in jails, hospitals and police if it goes forward, some say…..”