#GunCrisis Solution of the Day: A wide mobilization of mental health resources

Neighbors watch police at the scene of a recent shooting death in Philadelphia. Photo by Joe Kaczmarek.

A new report at phillymag.com say that  “according to some medical experts, a diagnosis we most commonly associate with troubled military combat veterans now fits many thousands of people in our poorest neighborhoods: post-traumatic stress disorder.”

There’s a solution available—a remedy that might change this city’s funereal culture. But when entire neighborhoods become toxic, the medicine has to be vast in scope. “You really only have two choices,” says Drexel researcher Sandra Bloom. “You can remove the person from the environment, or you can change the environment itself.”

So, says Bloom, individual treatment can be helpful, including both talk therapy and pharmaceutical interventions. But big cities like Philadelphia, with large neighborhoods subjected to decades of violence, need to think in broader, more dramatic terms. “To treat large populations and cause a cultural shift,” she says, “we need to look at the kinds of group treatments”—including group therapy sessions and a wide mobilization of mental health resources—“that have been employed in war-torn places like Rwanda and Bosnia.”

READ THE FULL POST AT: Welcome to Hell: Philadelphia Has a Serious Case of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder