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Patient-Centered Guides

July 2001

Children's Mental Health Crisis:
New Parent Resources Released by Publisher

SEBASTOPOL, CA -- In January of 2001, David Satcher, Surgeon General, released a report on the US public crisis in mental health for children and adolescents.

"The burden of suffering experienced by children with mental health needs and their families has created a health crisis in this country. Growing numbers of children are suffering needlessly because their emotional, behavioral, and developmental needs are not being met by those very institutions which were explicitly created to take care of them. It is time that we as a Nation took seriously the task of preventing mental health problems and treating mental illnesses in youth."

Among the sobering statistics:

  • 1 in 10 children and adolescents suffer from mental illness severe enough to cause some level of impairment
  • In any given year, less than 20% of these children receive needed treatment.
Long-term consequences of untreated childhood disorders are costly, in human and fiscal terms.

Since the surgeon general's report was released, the crisis of children's mental illness continues to make news. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) announced developmental grants for autism centers of excellence. NIH also launched a nationwide study to improve the treatment of the 2.3 million Americans suffering with bipolar disorder. A range of bills are currently before Congress on parity in insurance coverage for mental illness, improving school counseling, etc. Jim Jeffords left the Republican party in part because of lack of funding of special education for those with physical and learning disabilities.

The burden of this crisis falls most heavily on families. Parents try to combat the paucity of resources for the serious problems facing their children by educating themselves, finding other parents who may have similar problems and solutions, and joining patient organizations and advocacy efforts.

Patient-Centered Guides announces the publication of two new family guides by Mitzi Waltz: Tourette's Syndrome: Finding Answers & Getting Help and Partial Seizure Disorders: A Guide for Patients and Families. These guides are the first in-depth books for families with these conditions. Ms. Waltz wrote these books because of a scarcity of resources available for families. These books help parents secure a diagnosis, find medical and therapeutic interventions, obtain coverage from insurance, and navigate the school system.

Press may receive a complementary copy of any of Ms.Waltz's books.

About the Author

Ms. Waltz is an advocate for families facing neurological issues. She has been heavily involved in parent support work, and has also advocated for special-needs children within the medical, insurance, and education systems. An author, journalist, and editor for more than a decade, she has previously written books on childhood/adolescent bipolar disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and pervasive developmental disorders (part of the autism spectrum of disorders). Beginning this Fall, she will be undertaking research at the Autism Research Unit in England.

About Patient-Centered Guides

Patient empowerment is the core of Patient-Centered Guides. We believe that people are empowered when they have the knowledge and skills to partner with their doctor or healthcare provider to get the best medical care possible.

We publish books that contain clear, concise, easy to understand information about the medical, practical and emotional aspects of health issues. Our authors are patient activists, knowledgeable about specific conditions and diseases, who have built strong and networked communities of patients, families, and caregivers. In addition to our books, we publish in-depth patient information on the web.

Patient-Centered Guides is a wholly-owned subsidiary of O'Reilly & Associates, Inc. O'Reilly is recognized worldwide for its technical books that provide value to people who are experiencing information pain. O'Reilly publishes books that make a difference in people's lives.

Tourette's Syndrome:
Finding Answers & Getting Help

by Mitzi Waltz
$24.95, 416 pages, paperback, 7x9"
ISBN: 0-596-50007-6

Partial Seizure Disorders:
A Guide for Patients and Families

by Mitzi Waltz
$19.95, 288 pages, paperback
ISBN: 0-596-50003-3

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