The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has now closed the public comment period on its 10 proposed “guiding principles of recovery” from mental illness and substance abuse, and they are worthy of comment.
Consistent with the agency's entire drift toward characterizing mental health as “behavioral” in nature rather than neurological or medical, SAMHSA has proposed a “working definition of recovery” that only incorporates behaviors. Factors like … accurate diagnosis, timely intervention, appropriate treatment, patient education, safe housing are nowhere to be found. In their place are “essential experiences” such as the “many pathways” to recovery and recognition that recovery is “culturally based.” The role of “treatment” is given the same weight as “dental care.”
Thanks to all of you who participated in the SAMHSA forums by commenting and voing. You did make a difference. Comments supporting the view that mental illness is a brain disease that needs and deserves treatment were among the most strongly supported.
For SAMSHA's list and explanation of its proposed guiding principles, visit “Recovery Defined – Give Us Your Feedback.” (Comments in the blog following the explanations are not eligible for direct comment or voting.)
To learn more about SAMSHA's discriminatory approach to severe mental illness, read "Bureaucratic Insanity" by Dr. E. Fuller Torrey.