Volume 5, Issue 2
Marie's Story .page 1
Executive Director .page 4 Agents in my Brain .page 1 Day on the Hill .page 5 Legislative Update .page 2 Mediterranean Diet .page 5 Mental Health News .page 3 MHAM Stories .page 7 repeatedly that they don't take Section 8, even from properties that accepted Section 8 at one time. After hearing this message over and over, Marie's anxiety began to escalate. She reached out to the Mental Health Association of Finding Home
Minnesota (MHAM) for help.
by Tom Johnson, Marie's advocate searched some databases Client Advocate for housing in Marie's county, where she wanted to remain. The searches substantiated Marie's Marie has experienced some of life's rich belief that the availability of rental units accepting moments, but in the last few years, she has had elevated levels of depression, anxiety, panic Marie's Story continued on page 6 attacks, and agoraphobia. Once an achiever and a leader, Marie has increasingly limited Agents in My Brain:
her activities to the safety and privacy of her How I Survived Manic
apartment. Last fall new neighbors moved into the apartment unit next door to Marie, and the Depression by Bill Hannon
quiet apartment suddenly seemed as if it was located next door to a busy runway at the airport. The following is an excerpt from the first The noise started in mid-afternoon and would chapter of Bill Hannon's book Agents in My Brain: proceed late into the night. How I Survived Manic Depression. Marie did what she could to try to get the noise level down. She left notes for the new neighbors to no avail. She talked to the building In April 1981, I was management, but the efforts of management manic and thought I was a only resulted in some improvement for a few CIA/FBI agent. I thought CIA days, but then the volume went up again. Marie management was sending me called the police with noise complaints, which secret messages by altering resulted in the police giving the neighbors the dialogue on TV shows. warnings and one citation. This helped, but I was flattered that they had Marie was beginning to feel that she needed gone to that trouble. I told to get out and find a new place that would everyone that I was planning contain better barriers to the sounds of others. to run for congress, and for Since she had a Section 8 Housing Choice president in 1996, which Voucher, a move, while not convenient, would would be the first election be manageable. To her shock and total dismay, it year when I'd be old enough, 35, to be president. was anything but quick and easy. I thought the CIA would help me get elected to When Marie contacted a number of rental Agents continued on page 7 properties within her community, she heard Improving lives for people with mental illnesses • LegISLAtIve UpDAte by Ed Eide, Executive Director
On March 12th we had a very successful Mental Health Day on the Hill. Over 700 people from around the state attended the event at the Capitol in Saint Paul. We heard from advocates, consumers, family members, and legislators about the importance of quality mental health services. Some have said it is the year for mental health at the legislature. Along with a Governor who understands the importance of mental health services, the legislature has been very responsive to the Mental Health Legislative Network's (MHLN) ideas.
The session started with acrimony over various gun violence bills. After the tragedies in Connecticut and other places, legislation on this issue was bound to be considered. We worked hard to remove references to mental illness in the proposed bills, as these references could have led to increased stigma, and more importantly, people not seeking help. Many people contacted legislators, and these references were removed and targeting people with mental illnesses ended.
Beside the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and health exchanges that should bring health care to many people who currently do not have adequate coverage or who have no coverage at all, other legislation works to improve early interventions. School linked mental health services will be expanded to more communities, and early onset of psychosis will be addressed. Transition age youth will continue to receive case management services as they move into adulthood.
Children's mental health services will be continued to age 21. Crisis teams will be expanded to 16 counties and 2 tribes. Mental health workforce shortages will be addressed through the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MNSCU) and the Department of Human Services (DHS).
We are working to expand Adult Rehabilitation Mental Health Services (ARMHS) to more people and looking at more services being reimbursable. We hope to transition people out of Anoka Metro Regional Treatment Center (AMRTC) and Minnesota Security Hospital (MSH) St. Peter quickly and to expand Intensive Rehabilitative Treatment Services (IRTS) to serve more challenging clients. These services will save money and serve more people.
Some of these services will shift costs from the state to counties. Some will move money from adult mental health grants. We are concerned about what that will look like.
We are hoping for expansion of Extended Employment Program for People with Serious Mental Illness (EE-SMI) for supported employment. Minnesota is also looking at developing Behavioral Health Homes (BHH). This could be at a community mental health center where people can receive all of their health As we have seen in past years, your stories to legislators make all the difference in getting laws passed and services provided. Please continue to share your stories.
Stay tuned for our final report.
The MHAM newsletter is published five times per year, with a circulation of 4,500. Nancy Paul, Editor. Board of directors
Mental Health Association of Minnesota
Daniel K. Rauenhorst, JD, President Elizabeth Collins 475 Cleveland Avenue N, Suite 222 Linda Cutler, JD, Past President Saint Paul, MN 55104-5589 Anastasia Cyptar, Vice President Beth Silverwater, Treasurer Michael Trangle, MD A. Brian Doran, At-Large Peter M. Thelen, At-Large Improving lives for people with mental illnesses

Mental Health News by Brett Dumke,
Study Finds that Five Common Mental Disorders
Share the Same Genes
A National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)-funded study
reveals that the five most common disorders—autism, attention
deficit hyperactivity disorder, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and
major depression—all share similar genetic components. These
findings may provide better diagnosis and treatment for these
health conditions in the future.
For more information on this study: Effects of Childhood Bullying Increase the Risk for
Psychiatric Disorders in Adulthood
Bullied children grow into adults who are at increased risk of developing anxiety disorders, depression
and suicidal thoughts, according to a study led by researchers at Duke Medicine. The findings, based on
more than 20 years of data from a large group of participants initially enrolled as adolescents, are the
most definitive to date in establishing the long-term psychological effects of bullying.
For more information on this study: CDC Report: Smoking Among
U.S. Adults with Mental Illness
1 in 3 adults with a mental illness are cigarette smokers, according
to a recent Vital Signs report by the Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention (CDC) in collaboration with the Substance Abuse
and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The report
highlights the importance of having access to proven smoking
cessation programs, as well as involvement from mental health
professionals, mental health facilities, and state and community leaders to collaborate and support evidence-based tobacco control programs. Some of the health benefits upon quitting smoking: > Risk for a heart attack drops sharply just 1 year after quitting.
> After 2 to 5 years, the chance of stroke can fall to about the same as a nonsmoker's.
> Within 5 years of quitting, the chance of cancer of the mouth, throat, esophagus, and bladder is cut in half.
> Ten years after quitting smoking, the risk for dying from lung cancer drops by half.
For more information on this report: For more information on how to quit smoking, call 1-800-QUIT-NOW, go online at, or contact your health provider.
Letter from the
executive Director
Over the past few years we have shared quite a bit of information in regard to State Operated Services (SOS). There was a group that met for over a year to talk about doing a better job of getting people out of AMRTC and the Community Behavioral Health Hospitals (CBHH) quicker. Months and months of talk with some pretty good plans developed – nothing happened.
Now the Offi ce of Legislative Auditor (OLA) has presented its fi ndings on SOS and has made some recommendations to the legislature. Some of these recommendations include: • The legislature should amend state laws for serving diffi cult clients.
• Conduct periodic court review of commitment.
• All information about commitments should be sent to the Commissioner.
• Eliminate governing board.
• Improve SOS measurements/outcomes.
• Find placement options for patients.
• AMRTC needs better plan for discharges.
• CBHH's should handle more diffi cult patients.
• Reduce the Developmental Disability (DD) facilities.
• MSH should develop standards of treatment.
• A senior administrator should oversee the use of seclusion and restraints.
• Develop a more focused mission.
DHS Commissioner Jesson concurs with many of these recommendations, and in fact, a number have been implemented already. She has also assigned specifi c staff to be responsible for each recommendation. There will be follow up hearings at the legislature as changes move forward. We will watch this closely and keep you posted. There is a link to the report on our website.
Perhaps the most troubling of the fi ndings is the comment made by Jim Nobles, Legislative Auditor, about the lack of discharges from St. Peter being a "lawsuit waiting to happen." We would agree with that. Very few patients have their case reviewed at all, let alone on a yearly basis. Since the average number of hours of treatment at St. Peter is under 16 per week, we wonder if it isn't more of a prison than a hospital.
We hope to work with leadership to design a treatment philosophy and set some standards for patient recovery.
If we believe in recovery, then treatment is critical. We need to expect more. Changes have to be made. As we have for 74 years, we will work hard to help people recover and move toward a better, healthier life.
Won't you help us? Improving lives for people with mental illnesses Day on the Hill
On Tuesday, March 12, over 700 people from all parts of Minnesota came to the Capitol to be a part of Mental Health Day on the Hill. We met at 10 a.m. for a briefi ng session at Christ Lutheran Church and learned about the bills before the legislature and how they will impact people living with mental illnesses. At the briefi ng we heard from Ed Eide (MHAM), Sue Abderholden (NAMI-MN), Bill Conley (Fraser), Mary Regan (MCCCA), Ron Brand (Minnesota Association of Community Mental Health Programs), Matt Burdick (NAMI-MN), and Anna McLafferty (NAMI-MN). The group then walked to the rotunda of the state Capitol for a rally at noon. At the rally, Senator Sheran, Senator Rosen, Representative Dorholt, and Representative Davnie spoke. We also heard from Kim Lutes, MHAM volunteer, Cynthia Fashaw from NAMI, and students from South High School in Minneapolis. A highlight of the rally was when Governor Mark Dayton addressed the crowd saying, "I am one of you." Thank you to all who participated! You made
2013's Day on the Hill a rousing success!

take Charge with the Mediterranean Diet!
MHAM is committed to providing tools and information that help people take charge of not
just their mental health, but their overall health as well. One thing you can do to improve
overall health is to improve your diet. The New
England Journal of Medicine recently published
a study by Dr. Ramon Estruch, a professor of
medicine at the University of Barcelona, that shows heart attacks, strokes, and deaths from heart disease among people at high risk can be lowered by 30% when they switch to a Mediterranean diet. This diet features dishes made from olive oil, nuts, beans, fi sh, fruits, and vegetables. Participants in the study ate at least three servings of fruits and at least two servings of vegetables each day. They had fi sh three times per week, as well as legumes (beans, peas, lentils) three times per week. Participants in the study avoided red meat and commercially made cookies, pastries and cakes, and they limited the amount of dairy and processed meat in their diet. While no diet can guarantee a longer life, this study suggests that the Mediterranean diet may lower your risk of dying from stroke, heart attack, or heart disease.
Studies show people living with severe mental illnesses have a life expectancy about 24 years less than people without a mental illness. While some factors that contribute to a shortened life expectancy may be hard to avoid, you can make simple changes in your life that will help increase your life expectancy. Our Take Charge booklets outline various options for improving your overall health – including healthy eating, sleep habits, exercise, and stress reduction. You can order the Take Charge booklet and other wellness materials from the MHAM website.
2013 Memorial and Honor gifts to MHAM
in Memory
Irene Lagges
Linda Cutler
James and Victoria Lagges Phillip and Susan Fantle Tom Murphy
Brad and Ann Heltemes
Thomas Heidal

Joyce Pesch
Stevens County Mental Health Advisory Council
Jeffrey Pomeroy Running in the 2013 Medtronic Marathon

Jonathon Robbins

Susan Segal

Dr. Martin A. Segal Andrew Scheig
William and Debra Sivanich
This list is current as of March 21, 2013. Every effort has been Mendon F. Schutt Family
made to ensure accuracy. If you note an error or omission, The Mendon F. Schutt Family Fund please accept our apologies. You can notify us of changes by calling Nancy Paul at 651-756-8584, ext. 9. Beth Silverwater's Mother

Ken and Linda Cutler Marie's Story continued from page 1 Section 8 vouchers was substantially reduced from what it was a few months ago and appeared to be in the process of shrinking still further. Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers are lost to individuals holding them if not used within a designated period, therefore, it was essential that Marie fi nd an apartment that could meet her needs and accept Section 8 before she lost the voucher. Marie's anxiety, susceptibility to panic attacks, and agoraphobia made bus transport and meeting landlords on her own challenging. She needed help to fi nd a place and negotiate a lease agreement. Marie and her advocate contacted the county, and she received a referral to an agency that assists qualifying individuals who need extra help in fi nding, visiting, and leasing an apartment. Working with her advocate, Marie found a small townhouse apartment that is working out well for her. While Marie's story ended positively, the rental markets around Minnesota, and especially in the Twin City Metropolitan area, are becoming very tight. Unless new affordable units are built and older ones rehabilitated, people will be at substantial risk of not fi nding a place to live. Without adequate housing, the challenges resulting from living with a mental illness increase exponentially.
Improving lives for people with mental illnesses Seeking Stories About MHAM!
In 2014, MHAM will celebrate 75 years of providing mental health advocacy and outreach in Minnesota.
We are planning various activities to commemorate this milestone. We would love to hear stories from
you about your memories of MHAM and see pictures from our past. Are you a former employee or
volunteer? Were our services helpful at a
difficult point in your life? Have you served
on the board of directors? We would like
to collect your stories and pictures to
create a book that shows the history of this
organization. We'd love to have as many people as possible participate, so please share this request with
anyone you think might be interested.
You can send your stories and pictures to Nancy Paul, Program and Development Associate, at [email protected] or Mental Health Association of Minnesota, 475 Cleveland Avenue N., Suite 475, Saint Paul, MN 55104.
Agents continued from page 1 congress. I thought they liked me because I was tough on crime. I tried to get a chance to speak at a state legislative committee meeting to suggest they build more prisons and keep them full of criminals. I thought I could save the world from crime. Later, I was walking on campus late one night, and a cocker spaniel was following me. I thought it was trailing me for the KGB. To lose the dog, I jumped into an icy pond on campus to wash off my scent. I swam to the other side of the pond, and when I got out, the dog was gone. I thought everyone on campus was supposed to switch dorm rooms to confuse the KGB. I went into a stranger's room and told him so. He called the police. They took me to a hospital where medication saved me. and from other chapters…
I have also had suicidal depressive lows and medication saved me from those also. I was so depressed I couldn't even get out of bed. I was failing in college because I couldn't concentrate or motivate myself. I thought life was hopeless. When I finally got a good antidepressant, Asendin, I cheered up and did well enough in school to graduate.
When I first got manic in 1977, I was not properly diagnosed or medicated. The doctor I had then told me after a few months that I didn't need any more treatment. That was horribly inaccurate. I didn't hear the word "antidepressant" until 1982 when I finally got to a competent doctor. At that point I started to get better. I learned that bipolar is largely genetic, and can go on and on even if your environment is OK. I got the genes for bipolar from my mother who had the illness herself. The disease is mostly biochemical, not environmental. Changing environments usually doesn't help. Medication does help. about Bill Hannon and agents in my Brain: How i survived Manic depression
With decent medication, my health is now almost OK. I lead support groups for the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) at the St. Paul Jewish Community Center. We meet at 7:00 p.m. on the first, third, and fifth Wednesday of each month. I am also a guest lecturer in college psychology classes. You can read the whole first chapter of Agents in my Brain: How I Survived Manic Depression at my website: (That's "biz" not "com.") From the website you can also order the whole book on paper, Kindle, or Nook.
475 Cleveland Avenue N, Suite 222, Saint Paul, MN 55104-5589 dulutH support Group for people witH Mental illnesses
1st and 3rd Thursday of each month, 5 – 7 pm, Miller Dwan Medical Center, Meeting Room 1 – 3,
Lobby Level, East Side, For more information, call MHAM at 1-800-862-1799.
DBSA Support GroupS
For people living with depression or bipolar disorder
and their family members and friends TwIn CITIES
Eden Prairie
1st, 3rd, and 5th Monday, 7pm 1st and 3rd Thursday, 7-9 pm 763-425-6505, ext. 515 2nd and 4th Monday, 7:30 pm 2nd and 4th Tuesday, 7 pm 1st and 3rd Tuesday, 7 pm Support St. Louis Park
2nd and 4th Thursday, 7 pm 1st, 3rd and 5th Wednesday, 7 pm GREATER MInnESoTA
Every Monday, 6:30pm 1st Monday, 5:30 pm 3rd Monday, 7 pm Every Monday, 3:30 pm Every Thursday, 6 pm



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