Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Bible and helping, persons with mental illness.

This past week has been a difficult for me.  It became that way when I found out my insurance company would not completely cover my Seroquel.  They would cover a little over half the cost. This is the only information I could get from a company called Med/Co who is responsible for implementing what the insurance company deems a correct amount.  They said I could appeal by mail but they had no phone number or email.  I will appeal the injustice vigorously because the medication Seroquel is very expensive.
When I have a set back like this, I get upset and fearful.  I also think how paying this extra money would affect my family. Right now I am not experiencing depressive or manic symptoms.  If I were my wife Robyn would take over as she has many times.
This brings me an important principle which is found in the Bible.

Mentally Ill people need advocacy
People who have mental illness need advocacy on a number of different levels. In the Psalms we are told,    For You save an afflicted people, But haughty eyes You abase, Psalm 18:27 (NASB).  The word afflicted in the Hebrew is translated from the Hebrew word, `aniy.  Aniy is used seventy-four times in the Old Testament from Exodus through Zechariah.  The English words translated for it are many.  Some are poor, needy, afflicted one, humble lowly and oppressed. In the Hebrew Levitical law, Israel was told again and again, to protect, lift up, advocate for and help the needy ( `aniy ).

New Testament explains the need for the true church to help the afflicted, needy.
Now the New Testament carries on with this idea of helping the afflicted, oppressed etc. and part of the mandate of the church is to help and advocate for this.
How do I put shoe leather to this command? There are many persons who are taken advantage of by the mental health system and this includes insurance companies.  The church should have trained individuals who can help do the necessary paperwork and leg work that is needed to help persons who have mental illness.  I have seen time and time again people in a mental health agency out of greed fail to help those not only who have depression but schizophrenia, a devastating disease that renders a person socially unable to get help. I am not talking about discussing with  them how to budget their money and food.  This could be included in t;he help.  But there is a time which you must give money to help those who cannot afford medications.  You also may need to  fill out the paperwork that is needed for a person to get SSI or a State ID card.
Part of helping the aniy is to actually talk to doctors and social workers and ask them about what has been done to help the mentally ill person that is your friend, loved one or one who is afflicted and needy.
Those with mental illness who are symptomatic cannot concentrate, they may be hearing voices, they may be too depressed to do anything but fight the illness. Part of helping them is giving them good reasons why they should not commit suicide.

These concepts are covered in our book, Broken Minds Hope for Healing When You Feel Like You're Losing It  http://books.google.com/books/about/Broken_Minds.html?id=HQAzGHfmdJUC

A good article on getting help with your insurance company is found at http://thyroid.about.com/cs/newsresearch/a/insurancepay.htm