Insane Consequences by DJ Jaffe
How the Mental Health Industry Fails the Mentally Ill

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Sadly, it was probably born at the wrong time in history and likely will fall on deaf ears in the halls of our lawmakers. However, if someone you love suffers from serious mental illness, this book provides critical, factual information to families who feel alone and under-resourced, facing an impossible situation.
-NY Journal of Books

Synopsis

This well-researched and highly critical examination of the state of our mental health system by the industry's most relentless critic presents a new and controversial explanation as to why--in spite of spending $147 billion annually--140,000 seriously mentally ill are homeless, 390,000 are incarcerated, and even educated, tenacious, and caring people can't get treatment for their mentally ill loved ones. DJ Jaffe blames the mental health industry and the government for shunning the 10 million adults who are the most seriously mentally ill--mainly those who suffer from schizophrenia and severe bipolar disorder--and, instead, working to improve "mental wellness" in 43 million others, many of whom are barely symptomatic. Using industry and government documents, scientific journals, and anecdotes from his thirty years of advocacy, Jaffe documents the insane consequences of these industry-driven policies: psychiatric hospitals for the seriously ill are still being closed; involuntary commitment criteria are being narrowed to the point where laws now require violence rather than prevent it; the public is endangered; and the mentally ill and their families are forced to suffer.

Insane Consequences proposes smart, compassionate, affordable, and sweeping reforms designed to send the most seriously ill to the head of the line for services rather than to jails, shelters, prisons, and morgues. It lays out a road map to spend less on mental "health" and more on mental "illness"--replace mission creep with mission control and return the mental health system to a focus on the most seriously ill. It is not money that is lacking; it's leadership.

This book is a must-read for anyone who works in the mental health industry or cares about the mentally ill, violence, homelessness, incarceration, or public policy.
 

About DJ Jaffe

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DJ Jaffe is executive director of Mental Illness Policy Org., a nonpartisan think tank, which creates detailed policy analysis for legislators, the media, and advocates. He regularly appears on television and has written opinion pieces for the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, and articles for National Review and Huffington Post. He has served with numerous nonprofits including the Treatment Advocacy Center and National Alliance on Mental Illness. He has a seriously mentally ill relative and lives with his wife, Rose, and dog, Pickles, in Harlem.
Author Residence: New York, NY
Author Hometown: Scarsdale, NY
 
Published April 11, 2017 by Prometheus Books. 363 pages
Genres: Health, Fitness & Dieting, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction
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NY Journal of Books

Above average
Reviewed by Constance Scharff PhD on Apr 16 2017

Sadly, it was probably born at the wrong time in history and likely will fall on deaf ears in the halls of our lawmakers. However, if someone you love suffers from serious mental illness, this book provides critical, factual information to families who feel alone and under-resourced, facing an impossible situation.

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