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Central Standard

The State Of Mental Illness In KC

Mental illness is a problem in every community, but what resources and services are available in Kansas City?

During a time of year when resolutions to improve physical health are prevalent, it’s easy to forget about another very important thing to keep in shape; your mental health. Mental illness is not a topic many like to discuss, but today on Central Standard we tackle the issue of mental illness and how to fight the stigma and get treatment when needed.

Our guests are Bob Batterson a child psychiatrist and President of the Missouri Psychiatric Association, Jen Boyden, the Program Director ofNational Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) of Kansas City and Alan Flory, President and CEO of ReDiscover, a mental health center in Kansas City.

These three experts, as well as many listeners, contribute to the conversation about mental illness in our community, including the treatment of anxiety, depression, bi-polar disorder and schizophrenia, to name a few disorders. Issues involved with this conversation include imprisonment of the mentally ill, insurance coverage for psychological treatment and how the mental health system has changed over time.

According to our panel, treatment is necessary but not always available to those who need it, and as hospital beds in psychiatric centers disappear for more lucrative specialties, they continue to ask: should mental illness be put in the same category as physical illness? And how would that affect stigma and availability of treatment?

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Matthew Long-Middleton has been a talk-show producer, community producer, Media Training Manager and now the Community Engagement Manager at KCUR. You can reach him at Matthew@kcur.org, or on Twitter @MLMIndustries.